[Image] Key duo recalled, Odegaard misses out: My Arsenal line-up vs Everton

By on April 23, 2021

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Arsenal take on Everton at the Emirates this evening. This is the team I’d like to see Mikel Arteta select for the match…

Bernd Leno was surprisingly rested for the Fulham game but I’d certainly like to see him recalled tonight as he’s one of Arsenal’s key players. Mat Ryan will drop out after his rare start last weekend.

In defence, Granit Xhaka should probably continue at left-back with Kieran Tierney still out but I’d give Calum Chambers a recall in place of Hector Bellerin at right-back. Chambers hasn’t put a foot wrong when he’s played lately and Bellerin has been average at best this season.

I’d also make a change in the middle of the Arsenal back four with Pablo Mari recalled to line-up alongside Rob Holding. I’m a huge Gabriel fan but he’s been making some silly errors in recent weeks – plus you can’t ignore the excellent record Mari and Holding have as a pairing.

Thomas Partey should also come back into the side this evening after being benched during the disappointing draw with Fulham. Dani Ceballos would be my pick for Partey’s partner so Mo Elneny would drop to the bench.

No Odegaard

Martin Odegaard is back in light training but I wouldn’t risk him from the start. He’s been out for four games with an ankle injury and isn’t 100% match fit so I’d save him for next weeks Europa League semi-final.

Therefore, Emile Smith Rowe should continue in the No.10 role against Everton this evening with Bukayo Saka keeping his place on the right side of the Arsenal attack.

Gabriel Martinelli showed glimpses of his quality against Fulham and I wouldn’t be disappointed to see him start again this evening but I think Nicolas Pepe deserves a recall on the left flank.

Arsenal have serious problems up front as Alexandre Lacazette has been ruled out with a hamstring injury. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is set to resume light training as he bids to return from malaria but this game will also come too soon for him.

So Arsenal have no senior striker available tonight. I would love to see Folarin Balogun given a chance to impress but it’s probably more sensible to start Eddie Nketiah. He’s more experienced and should be in confident mood after scoring against Fulham last time out.

This would be my Arsenal line-up:

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