TEAM: The Ox Starts – My Arsenal Starting XI To Face Everton

By on August 21, 2014


Arsenal face a tough trip to Goodison Park to take on Everton on Saturday night. Here is the team I’d like Arsene Wenger to go with.

Obviously Wojciech Szczesny should start in goal and despite Per Mertesacker being available again, I’d stick with the same back-four that played at Besiktas in midweek.

Mertesacker isn’t going to be match sharp yet and Arsene has already hinted he won’t throw all three of our German contingent into the starting eleven. Calum Chambers has looked excellent at the back and hasn’t put a foot wrong, so while Per is a vital part of our team, I’d stick with a settled back-four on Saturday and ease Per back in.

Mikel Arteta is certain to miss a return to his former club after spraining his ankle in midweek so Mathieu Flamini is going to have to come in. It’s vital the Frenchman keeps his head and avoids an early booking – which is easier said than done!

In front of Flamini I’d go with Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey to give us some solidity in the middle of the park. Rambo has to play as he’ll be suspended in midweek and although Jack hasn’t been at his best so far this season, there were signs he’s starting to find his feet in the first half against Besiktas.

Santi Cazorla was well off the pace on Tuesday so I’d leave him out on Saturday with Mesut Ozil coming in to the side. His natural position may not be out on the left but he did start there a few times last season and always drifts out to the wing during games, so I think he’s more than capable of playing there on this occasion.

I’d certainly bring The Ox in to the team as he’s made a difference from the bench in both games so far, and this would allow Alexis Sanchez to move up front where I think his best position would be. Giroud was simply awful on Tuesday and is nowhere near match sharp, so I’d go with Sanchez up top.

Here’s how my team would line-up:

The pace of Ox and Sanchez would cause Everton lots of problems and with Ozil and Wilshere supplying the passes, and Ramsey making the late runs in to the box, we’d have a great chance of creating plenty of chances.

In reality though, I can see Arsene starting Giroud instead of Wilshere, which would see Sanchez move to the right, Ozil come into the middle and The Ox start on the left. This wouldn’t be a disaster by any means but I’d just love us to unleash the pace against the Toffess.

What side would you put out this weekend?