4-3-2-1: AMN & Holding start | My Arsenal line-up to face Ostensunds

By on February 15, 2018


Arsenal take on Ostensunds in the first leg of our Europa League last-32 tie this evening. Here is the team I would like to see Arsene Wenger select….

Goalkeeper: Ospina

Cech hasn’t travelled to Sweden so Ospina is set to return in goal with Macey offering support from the bench.

Defence: Bellerin, Holding, Mustafi, Monreal

Wenger has quite rightly decided not to risk Koscielny’s dodgy Achilles on a frozen artificial pitch. Holding, Mertesacker and Chambers are all options to come in but I’d give the nod to Holding.

We don’t have a game this weekend and the Europa League is arguably the most important competition left for us so I see no reason why Wenger shouldn’t name virtually a full strength side.

That means Mustafi should continue in the middle of defence with Monreal and Bellerin in the full-back positions.

Midfield: Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Iwobi

We have problems in midfield as Ramsey’s groin injury is worse than first thought and he won’t feature in either legs against Ostensunds while Wilshere has been left in north London to fully recover from a sickness bug.

Elneny has done OK in recent games but I’d like to see Maitland-Niles given a chance in his preferred defensive midfield role. The youngster spoke at the pre-match press conference with Wenger yesterday so hopefully that’s a hint he’ll play. I just hope it’s in midfield and not at left-back again.

Our options are limited so Xhaka will have to start while Iwobi could also play in a more central position. The Nigerian could move forward to make an attacking three behind the striker but I’d prefer to see him slightly deeper in this away game.

Let’s be honest, a midfield three of Maitland-Niles, Xhaka and Iwobi is pretty poverty but it’s the situation we find ourselves in and it should be enough to get a result against Ostensunds.

danny welbeck arsenal

Attack: Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Welbeck

Wenger has confirmed Ozil will start which is great news as we should be taking this game seriously and playing Mesut in frozen conditions against some Swedish minnows shows the boss means business.

Mkhitaryan is eligible so he should get another start in attack and no doubt he’ll be looking to impress after a hugely disappointing performance against Tottenham last weekend.

Unfortunately Aubameyang is ineligible so our options up front are limited as Lacazette has been ruled out for at least a month following knee surgery.

Therefore, we have little option other than to hand Welbeck a rare start up front and I hope Danny takes this opportunity to impress. Young Eddie Nketiah has travelled so he should be named on the bench.

This is the team I hope we see: