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Arsenal will kick off their EFL Cup campaign with a trip to Championship side Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night. This is the team I’d like to see Arsene Wenger go with….
Ospina looks set to play in all the cup competitions this season so the Colombian will come in for Cech between the sticks.
Defence: Debuchy, Gabriel, Holding, Gibbs
Debuchy has been frozen out of the first team but he’s still on the books after failing to secure a move away from the club during the summer so it’s time he started to earn his wage.
Gabriel is back in contention after recovering from an ankle injury that he suffered in pre-season so I’d start him alongside Holding with Gibbs coming in at left-back.
Midfield: Xhaka, Elneny
Xhaka was surprisingly named on the bench for the third game in a row at the weekend but showed us all why he should be starting after scoring a thunderous late goal to seal a 4-1 win over Hull. I think he’s certain to start tomorrow so hopefully he can put in another top class display and force Wenger to keep him in the team for the Chelsea game.
The other midfielder is expected to be Elneny as Ramsey won’t be risked for this game as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury. Cazorla and Coquelin will drop out.
Attack: Reine-Adelaide, The Ox, Lucas
Wenger is expected to make wholesale changes with all our big-guns rested for the Chelsea game so I’d like to see us give youngster Jeff Reine-Adelaide a chance to impress in attack.
Oxlade-Chamberlain needs a morale-boosting performance as he’s started the season where he left off last year….in poor form. With the likes of Walcott, Ozil and Iwobi rested we should see Lucas Perez get a run-out and he’s able to play out on the wing if needed.
Giroud missed the win over Hull with a toe injury and I wouldn’t risk him for this match with the Chelsea game coming up so I’d like to see Chuba Akpom get a game. He wasn’t sent out on loan as Wenger planned to use him so this is the best chance he’ll get to start.
This would be my line-up to face Forest:
It’s not a very experienced side but the Chelsea game has to be the priority so I hope we see all the key men rested with some of the fringe players given a chance in the first team.