Arsenal host Manchester United in Saturday’s evening Premier League game at the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners start the weekend in fourth spot and four points behind us, with ourselves needing a victory to keep in touch with leaders Manchester City.
We were 4-2 winners at Watford on Tuesday whilst Arsenal didn’t play for another 24 hours afterwards, thrashing Huddersfield Town 5-0.
Here is the team I think Arsene Wenger will put out against us:
Arsenal’s goalkeeper has been in good form of late in keeping back-to-back clean sheets. Petr Cech must be one of the first names on the team list.
The French centre-back is playing well on the right-hand side of Arsenal’s back three so Laurent Koscielny could be matched up to Marcus Rashford or Anthony Martial on Saturday.
The German has been playing very well of late since returning from injury to play in the middle of Arsenal’s back three. Romelu Lukaku hasn’t been in the best of form for us of late either.
Arguably the weak point of the Gunners’ defence, Nacho Monreal seems pretty consistent of late though. The left-back has adapted to his central role but hopefully the likes of Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard or Juan Mata can test him out.
Arsenal have a pacey right wingback who gets in good positions to put crosses into the box, but Hector Bellerin isn’t too great at picking out a teammate. The Spaniard could give Ashley Young a busy game as both like to bomb up and down the field from their wide positions.
The Welsh international helped himself to two excellent assists midweek and should keep his place in central midfield as a result.
A player who looks to pick up his fair share of cards, Granit Xhaka is a player we may test in the middle of the park tomorrow. The Swiss international plays the more holding role of the two central midfielders and does have a decent long range pass on him.
I don’t rate Sead Kolasinac defensively but the summer signing from Schalke 04 has popped up with a couple of important goals in his early days at Arsenal. I think he is capable of testing Antonio Valencia defensively but that our captain should find plenty of space to run into in their half.
Reportedly a transfer target of Jose Mourinho’s, Mesut Ozil was excellent versus Huddersfield on Wednesday but doesn’t always turn up in the big games. Should Nemanja Matic be out then we hope the German playmaker has one of those anonymous performances on Saturday.
A minor doubt following a hamstring complaint in midweek, Arsene Wenger is confident that Alexis Sanchez will be fit to face us. The alternate option to the Chilean would be Danny Welbeck or Alex Iwobi in this role. Assuming Sanchez starts I wouldn’t be surprised if Victor Lindelof is given the duties to man mark him much like he did versus Richarlison at Watford.
Alexandre Lacazette looks set to miss out with a groin injury picked up last time out, so Olivier Giroud is likely to be the striker having came on for his fellow countryman during the week. The French international came off the bench at half-time to score twice in that game.
Here is the Arsenal team on paper: