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Arsenal will be starting their second game of the Premier League this season in a London Derby v Chelsea,l. And this is a possible lineup Unai Emery could come up with.
Our summer signing has started three of our five pre-season games with Petr Cech impressing during the other two so it’s going to be interesting to see who Emery goes with. However, we’ve spent decent money on Leno to replace Cech so there’s no point leaving him on the bench.
Defence: Bellerin, Sokratis, Mustafi, Maitland-Niles
Sead Kolasinac is out for up to 10 weeks with a knee injury and although Nacho Monreal returned to training yesterday following a knock he’s not match fit so Ainsley Maitland-Niles should start at left-back.
Hopefully Hector Bellerin can push on this season under Emery and I’d still have him as our first choice right-back ahead of Stephan Lichtsteiner.
Sokratis is certain to make his Premier League debut in the middle of defence on Sunday but unfortunately we didn’t sign anyone to play alongside him. Loaning Calum Chambers looks a strange decision after we failed to bring in another centre-back so it looks like Shkodran Mustafi will partner Sokratis for the coming months with Rob Holding the back-up.
Midfield: Torreira, Xhaka, Ramsey
Matteo Guendouzi has been excellent in pre-season and it looks like we’ve snapped-up a real star of the future but I’m still not sure he’s ready to start in the Premier League just yet.
Lucas Torreira hasn’t had much time to work on his fitness but I can’t wait to see him in make his league debut as he’s the defensive midfielder we’ve been missing since Gilberto left.
Aaron Ramsey is back in full training after recovering from a minor calf injury so assuming he’s available to start, I’d go with him alongside Granit Xhaka in front or Torreira in midfield to give us three men in the middle of the park to cope with City’s threat.
Attack: Mkhitaryan, Ozil, Aubameyang
Playing three in the middle means we’ll have to sacrifice an attacker and unfortunately that man needs to be Alexandre Lacazette as there is no way we should leave Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang out. Against most teams I’d play both of them but I don’t think we can afford that luxury against City so I’d go with Auba up front with Laca on the bench.
Mesut Ozil has a big season in front of him after a turbulent summer so let’s hope he’s ready to work hard under Emery while I have a feeling Henrikh Mkhitaryan is going to have a great season for us.
Danny Welbeck isn’t fit so won’t be in contention meaning youngster Reiss Nelson is likely to be on the bench on Sunday afternoon along with Alex Iwobi.