Mikel Arteta has a difficult decision to make on Wednesday night. With the pressure already piling on his team and Manchester City to come on Saturday, suddenly this League Cup game holds significance.
With the early kick-off against Manchester City on Saturday, asking his strongest XI to play again on Wednesday might seem a bit too risky, but I don’t think the Spaniard can afford to select a team too far from it.
Have a look how I think we could line up for the game below. Disagree? Create your Arsenal XI at the bottom of this article.
Goalkeeper: Aaron Ramsdale
This is likely to be new signing Ramsdale’s time to shine. Leno was impressive in a disappointing Arsenal performance against Chelsea, so Aaron will need to take his chances in these types of games in order to win the no.1 spot.
Defenders: Calum Chambers, Rob Holding, Pablo Mari, Nuno Tavares
With Ben White still out after testing positive for Covid and Gabriel injured, Arsenal have little choice but to utlise the back up pairing of Holding and Mari in this fixture. Tavares has looked good from the bench and Arsenal will likely be without Tierney for this one after he picked up a knock against Chelsea. At right back there is a conundrum, Chambers could come back in to give the team a more physical edge.
Midfielders: Mohammed Elneny, Granit Xhaka; Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard, Gabriel Martinelli
In midfield Arsenal must rotate. Their players looked leggy at the end of the Chelsea game and with Manhcester City to come on Saturday, there needs to be some freshness. Odegaard is likely to be eligible to play and come in for Smith Rowe. Smith Rowe has been a shining light in this Arsenal squad but we need him on Saturday and his injury history requires Arsenal to be careful with him. Lokonga is another player needed in the absence of Thomas Partey, so Elneny could be given a chance in this one.
Striker: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang came off the bench against Chelsea after missing the opening game with Covid. The Gabon international now looks ready to start and Arteta will need him firing and back to his best very quickly.
How would you line up? Create your XI below and share it on social media!