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4-2-3-1 – Trio make debuts, Nketiah also starts: My Arsenal line-up to face Vorskla

By on September 19, 2018

Arsenal start the 2018/19 Europa League campaign at the Emirates on Thursday night when Ukrainian minnows Vorskla come to north London. This is the line-up I’d like Unai Emery to select…

Goalkeeper: Leno

We will finally get a chance to see summer signing Bernd Leno in an Arsenal shirt tomorrow night as he’s expected to make his debut. I’ve been calling for him to start ahead of Petr Cech in the league but Emery seems to have made the 36-year-old his first choice so hopefully Leno can force his way in to the starting eleven on a regular basis with some positive displays in Europe.

Defence: Lichtsteiner, Holding, Mustafi, Monreal

We should also see some changes in defence tomorrow night. Ideally we’d rest the entire back four but with Laurent Koscielny, Sead Kolasinac and Ainsley Maitland-Niles all still working their way back to full fitness, Emery doesn’t have too many options.

We should certainly see Stephan Lichtsteiner making his debut at right-back with Hector Bellerin given a well-earned rest while Rob Holding should also get a run out with Sokratis the man most likely to make way.

I’ve love to see Nacho Monreal also given a breather but unfortunately we don’t have too many options at left-back. Youngster Dominic Thompson trained with the first team this afternoon but it’s too much to ask the 18-year-old to start in a European game. He’s not even played for the U23’s yet, so Monreal will have to play again at left-back.

Midfield: Torreira, Elneny, Mkhitaryan

Lucas Torreira should finally make his full debut on Thursday night. The Uruguayan international has been hugely impressive off the bench so far this season and it’s about time he gets a chance from the start.

The likes of Granit Xhaka, Aaron Ramsey and Matteo Guendouzi deserve a rest so Mohamed Elneny could start his first game of the season alongside Torreira in midfield.

Many feel Emile Smith-Rowe will be given a chance to impress and I would love to see the youngster back in the first team after a hugely impressive pre-season. However, I’d rather we give Henrikh Mkhitaryan a run out in his preferred central attacking midfield role.

Attack: Welbeck, Iwobi, Nketiah

Emery should rest all our big guns so that means a night off for Mesut Ozil, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette. I expect at least one of the attacking trio to be on the bench just in case but I wouldn’t start any of them.

Danny Welbeck can come in to the front three and while he’s expected to lead the line up front with Miki out wide and Smith-Rowe in the middle, I’d love to see Eddie Nketiah given a chance up front. He’s banged the goals in for the U23’s and has a huge future ahead of him so I’m keen to see what he can do in the first team and this is a great opportunity.

Alex Iwobi has missed out in recent games so he’ll be fresh and the Nigerian international would make-up my attacking three alongside Welbeck and Nketiah with Mkhitaryan in the playmaker position.

Here is the side I hope we’ll see:

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