Arsenal have confirmed that David Luiz has been drafted into the starting lineup as a late replacement for Rob Holding in defence just before kickoff.
Holding has pulled up with a tight hamstring during the warm-up.
It appeared that we were going to be playing our usual 3-4-3 formation with Rob Holding on the right of a back three, alongside Gabriel and Kieran Tierney.
However, Luiz has never played that role for us before, so Hector Bellerin could move into right-back in a back four.
This makes things tough on manager Mikel Arteta, who may be forced to play Bukayo Saka in an unfamiliar central midfield role if we are to play a 4-3-3. The alternative option could be to play the England international on the left of a midfield five, with Nicolas Pepe on the right and Willian supporting Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang in attack.
Either way, none of this is ideal in our preparations, particularly with the short amount of time the boss will have had to plan his new strategy.
What’s more, David Luiz was at fault for Manchester City’s opener before giving away a penalty and being sent off in our 3-0 loss here back in June. He came on in the 24th minute that day.
Manchester City were held 1-1 by newly-promoted Leeds United prior to the international break, having previously been thrashed 2-5 at home by Leicester City. Pep Guardiola’s side start the day five points behind us with a game in hand, whilst we would move within 1 point of Premier League leaders Everton with a win this evening.