PREVIEW: Anderlecht v Arsenal, Team News, Starting XI + Prediction

By on October 22, 2014


Arsenal get back to Champions League action this evening when we take on Anderlecht in Brussels.

After losing our opening Group D match 2-0 away at Dortmund, we thrashed Galatasaray 4-1 at the Emirates thanks to a superb hat-trick from Danny Welbeck.

That win got our campaign back on track as it saw us move into second place in the table, and another win tonight will be a big step towards securing qualification to the knockout stages.

Anderlecht sit third on one point after earning an impressive 1-1 draw away at Galatasaray on Match Day 1 but they were subsequently beaten 3-0 by Dortmund so we’ll be looking for a similar score-line tonight if we want to push the German’s for top spot.

Arsenal warmed up for the game with a disappointing 2-2 draw at home to Hull City on Saturday and we’re going to have to play a lot better than we did during the second half if we want to come away with all three points.

Team News

Unfortunately Wojciech Szczesny got himself sent off against Galatasaray so is suspended for tonight’s game and second choice goalkeeper David Ospina has been ruled out for up to three months with a thigh injury.

It means Emiliano Martinez will make just his third start for the club while 17-year-old Ryan Huddart will be on the bench.

Calum Chambers returns from a domestic ban and should start alongside Per Mertesacker as Laurent Koscielny is once again out with an Achilles injury. Hector Bellerin should keep his place at right-back.

Mikel Arteta is expected to start after three weeks out with a calf strain while Aaron Ramsey is also in contention after making his comeback off the bench at the weekend.

The game comes too soon for Theo Walcott and Serge Gnabry, while Francis Coquelin hasn’t travelled.

Mesut Ozil is still injured and joins the likes of Olivier Giroud and Mathieu Debuchy on the sidelines.

Preferred line-up

With Wilshere suspended for Saturday’s trip to Sunderland, I’d keep him in the team and give Ramsey more time to rest so he’s fresher for the weekend. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain wasn’t at his best against Hull but I’d give him another chance to impress.

While this is how I’d line-up, Wenger will probably stick with his 4-1-4-1 formation and play Cazorla on the left, Sanchez right with Ramsey and Jack in front of Arteta in the middle.


Anderlecht are usually one of the Champions League whipping boys and if we want to have a chance of finishing top in Group D, then we have to pick up three points. Thankfully, I think we’ll do it. Anderlecht 0-2 Arsenal



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  2. barbse babs dawodu

    October 22, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Tonight is another litmus test for Arsenal. Well its obvious the team has some major shortfall. I think the current transition and inclusion within, sum up with the huge injuries to major players are key factors and is taking a tow on the squad. But nevertheless, Wenger need to stimulate the rest of the guys in order to prove they still a contender in the champion league. A win tonight will not only increase the momentum but will also intensify the edge for a push in the EPL. Arsenal will have put out a good fight.

  3. Rowland

    October 22, 2014 at 5:24 pm

    Anderlecht 1-2 Arsenal

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