4-3-2-1: No Lacazette, Xhaka dropped: The Arsenal XI that can beat Tottenham

By on February 8, 2018

granit xhaka arsenal

Arsenal desperately need a win when we take on Tottenham at Wembley on Saturday afternoon. Here is the team I would like to see Arsene Wenger select….

Goalkeeper: Cech

Cech remains a slight doubt to face Tottenham this weekend after picking up a calf problem against Everton last time out. He’ll be assessed at training tomorrow but reports suggest he’ll be fit and I pray he is as I dread Ospina starting in goal. Yes, Cech is well passed his best but he’s still a much better keeper than Ospina.

Defence: Bellerin, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal

Monreal was substituted at half-time during the 5-1 win over Everton but it was only due to illness and the Spaniard is expected to be fit to start at left-back this weekend.

I’d resist any temptation to revert to a back three and would stick with a four meaning Mustafi should continue alongside Koscielny with Bellerin once again at right-back.

Midfield: Elneny, Wilshere, Ramsey

I said it last week and I’ll say it again…..it’s time to drop Xhaka. He’s become a liability and is a huge weak link in the team. Elneny isn’t the long-term answer but I think he could do a solid job if we play him sitting in front of the defence.

The Egyptian international can break up play and make the simple passes plus he’s comfortable dropping in to the defence to make a back five when we’re not in possession, which would be useful against Spurs.

For me, it’s time to unleash Wilshere and Ramsey in the same team. Wenger has resisted starting them together but with Elneny sitting deep I think we can afford to have both players in midfield this weekend.

Rambo showed how important he is to Arsenal after scoring a hat-trick last weekend and Jack was in superb form while Ramsey was out so they both deserve a starting spot. This is the way we can do it.

aaron ramsey arsenal

Attack: Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang

I was a little concerned it might take Aubameyang some time to adjust to life in England and although it was just his first game, the Gabon international looked right at home in an Arsenal shirt.

He took his goal like the world class striker he is, so as much as it’s harsh to leave Lacazette on the bench, I don’t think we have a choice this weekend as we can’t play two up top away to Spurs.

Mkhitaryan was outstanding last weekend and it wasn’t just his three assists that caught the eye but his work rate was exceptional. Hopefully that’s a sign of things to come from him.

I think he can strike up a exciting partnership with Ozil and Mkhitaryan’s arrival could bring even more out of our German playmaker so I’m looking forward to seeing how their partnership develops.

Iwobi put in a solid shift last week but I still think he needs to make way to allow Wilshere and Ramsey to play in the same team.

This is the team I hope we see:

I honestly think this is our best available eleven as it offers good balance and we get to include all our best players, with the exception of Lacazette. Play this side, Wenger, and we can bring home the three points!


  1. Vicbklyn

    February 9, 2018 at 1:57 am

    I agree 100% that we must play with a DM & Eleny at the moment is our best& only option.
    I disagree 100% about Wilshire & Ramsey. They both lack the discipline in defense to consistently play together. No top club in Europe wants them besides for GB publicity & rumors by their agents. Good role players, stars at a smaller club. Wenger’s loyalty to them hurts us.
    Xhaka is better than most think. His numbers speak to that and top clubs want him. However, he has never been a DM. In Germany, he paired with a true DM. Until we get a better option, he should start with Eleny. He shows more discipline to stay out if the box behind the attacking players, we need his size, & he doesn’t lose the ball. He is slow but faster than JW & AR.
    Our biggest problem with our defense is the space left in midfield when all the midfielders are attacking.
    Lacazette needs to start and let us attack.

  2. jccesasii

    February 14, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Provisional Arsenal squad: Cech, Ospina, Macey, Mertesacker, Holding, Mustafi, Koscielny, Chambers, Monreal, Mavropanos, Bellerin, Nelson, Kolasinac, Maitland-Niles, Wilshere, Xhaka, Elneny, Ramsey, Ozil, Iwobi, Welbeck, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang, Lacazette.

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