[Image] Partey & Martinelli start, no Saka: My Arsenal line-up vs Leicester

By on February 27, 2021

gabriel martinelli 2019

Arsenal take on Leicester City at the King Power on Sunday lunchtime. This is the team I’d like to see Mikel Arteta select for the match…

It’s going to be interesting to see how Arteta approaches this game as we’ve just come off the back of an intense double-header with Benfica and a draining defeat to Manchester City. However, we desperately need to get ourselves back in European qualification contention in the league so we have to go for a win at Leicester while also protecting some players.

Bernd Leno will obviously keep his place in goal while I’d stick with David Luiz alongside Gabriel in the middle of defence despite Rob Holding being available again. Kieran Tierney was excellent again on Thursday night so he should remain at left-back but I’d give Hector Bellerin a rest with Cedric Soares coming in at right-back.

Thomas Partey made his return off the bench during our comeback win over Benfica so he should be fit to join Granit Xhaka in midfield tomorrow. Dani Ceballos will make way following his disastrous performance in midweek.

Bukayo Saka was our difference-maker again on Thursday night. The kid is special but it’s easy to forget he’s still only 19 and we need to protect him. So I’d give him a well-earned rest tomorrow afternoon. I’d also give Martin Odegaard a breather as he’s started the last four matches in all competitions so Nicolas Pepe should be recalled to start in the Arsenal attack.

No doubt Arteta will start Willian after praising the Brazilian for his impact off the bench against Benfica but I’d much prefer to see Gabriel Martinelli given a recall. He’s been overlooked recently so I’m not sure what’s going on but I hope we see him back in the team at Leicester.

Emile Smith Rowe should keep his place in the attacking midfield role and I’d keep Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up front. This is a big game for Arsenal and we need our main goalscorer in the team. Alexandre Lacazette can be a useful player to have off the bench.

This would be my line-up:

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