Paul Merson has claimed that Danny Welbeck has to start against Chelsea, as he is the only Arsenal player ‘that causes them problems’.
The England international has started in our last two encounters with the Blues, in which we came away with wins in the FA Cup final and Community Shield, and Merson believes he is key in hurting today’s opponents.
“If there’s one player that’s got to play against Chelsea it has to be Welbeck,” Merson said.
“He’s the only one that causes them problems.
“He runs beyond and he’ll run them in the channels.”
“It’s probably the biggest game out of the whole season where the first goal is most important,” he added.
“You say ‘Arsenal beat them at the Emirates, they beat them in the FA Cup’. They scored the first goal in them games.
“If they don’t score the first goal you’re just going to think ‘what’s going to happen here?’.
“They will just capitulate and the game will run away from them.”
Arsene Wenger has used Welbeck often this term, and clearly sees him as a positive option out wide, although the player himself is also used centrally as a makeshift striker.
Generally Danny would be used centrally against the Blues, and you would expect Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil to be given the nod in the two attacking roles behind the striker, so the French manager will not have the easiest decision today.
Most pundits and ‘experts’ alike have already written off Arsenal’s chances of getting a result today at Stamford Bridge, and Merson is usually one to twist the knife in when talking about us, but he is refusing to completely rule out a win this time.
Does Welbeck have to start? Can we really leave Alexis Sanchez or our club-record signing Alexandre Lacazette out the starting XI?