Arsene Wenger has praised the hard work and mentality of his Arsenal players in the build up to this important 5th round FA cup clash with an in-form Middlesborough side. And while the boss spoke about the good options that he now has all over the pitch, he has called on today’s starting line-up to embrace the competitive nature of playing for Arsenal and put in a fully focused performance as the club heads into a really vital stage of the season.
We already knew that Wojciech Szczesny was going to start in goal today but we were not expecting quite so many changes all over the pitch. Only Laurent Koscielny keeps his place from the back four that started against Leicester on Tuesday night, with Gibbs and Chambers coming in to the full back roles and the new January signing Gabriel Paulista getting his debut alongside the France international.
Wenger has obviously been kidding us all as well, because Alexcis Sanchez is not just in the squad today, he will start the game with Giroud and Welbeck completing the front three. The Frenchman has picked a very attacking side, as both Cazorla and Ozil are in to supply the creativity for the forwards to work on.
THe final change is Mathieu Flamini coming in for young Coquelin and it will be a big game for him to provide the protection for our defence.
Chambers, Gabriel, Koscielny, Gibbs
Alexis, Cazorla, Ozil, Welbeck
subs: Martinez, Mertesacker, Monreal, Rosicky, Walcott, Coquelin, Akpom
I just hope that the boss has not made too many changes and risked our defence of the FA cup trophy. If we come unstuck there will be questions asked. COYG!