Arsenal forward line against Man Utd – a tricky decision for Unai Emery

I would suggest that it is fairly certain that Unai Emery will go with Nicholas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up-front against Man Utd but who will the Spaniard pick as the third man, either on the wing or just behind?

Since Lacazette got injured it was thought that Reiss Nelson would slip into his role, albeit in a different position up front but both Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli have also staked a claim and there is always the chance that it could be Mesut Ozil.

Obviously, it depends on which formation Emery goes with and that in itself is difficult to second guess but there are indications as to what the manager will do depending on the formation.

If he goes 4-3-3 then I reckon he will slip Saka in on the left with Auba down the middle and Pepe on the right side, however, if he goes say 4-3-1-2 then I can actually see him playing Ozil just behind Pepe and Aubameyang,

Looking at the different options I do not see where Emery will fit in Martinelli simply because Auba has the middle role and the young Brazilian has not struck me as a sort of winger. Nelson could fill that role but I believe that Saka has moved ahead of him in the managers thinking.

It is all guesswork at this stage but as an educated guess I am fairly confident that if Emery goes with a three-man front line it will be Saka, Aubameyang and Pepe, if he goes with two forwards and one just behind then it will be Ozil behind the front two.


    1. Guendozie xhaka. That paring has not paid off lately. I’ll go for Xhaka Torriera. Cuz xhaka looks manageable with Torriera beside him

  1. OT

    No matter what happens today, we won’t be 4th place because Bournemouth is playing West Ham.
    Also Chelsea and Spurs will probably win so probably won’t even be in top 6 today.

    So vital that we get a result against United to be in the top part of the table preferably a Win to get back to 4th

    Liverpool only beat Sheffield United (lower table team) by just 1 goal. But that’s job done.
    Liverpool fans won’t be crying that they only won by 1 goal. They will be thrilled that they have another 3 points

    People saying we should beat United “Big” are missing the big picture. It’s about points not goals. Also United are solid at home. They beat Chelsea 4-0. So Beating United 0-1 or 1-2 will do me just fine. And a draw won’t be the End of the World either. Winning at Old Trafford is tough. But hopefully we will win
    A win is A win
    3 points is 3 points

    1. A win is a win. Even the type against Aston Villa. It’s 3 points that I want on Monday.
      For our forward we are not short of options. But for a match like this Auaba is the focal point in the absent of Lacca.

      1. I think our forward line is where we’re short of options. Apart PAL the rest of our attackers are learning their trade, and very slowly too.

  2. Is play 4,5,1 the five in the middle just to counteract United’s midfield, leave abba up front alone with saka and pepe on the wings for when we break, Ozil in behind picking passes out. He must play holding k,t at left back chambers at right back, why revert back to a leaking defence when theres a back four that haven’t conceded yet. There for enough to play 60\70 mins. Get the game win before changing thing at the back. Bring bellerin on for the last twenty mins, but win the game first without conceding goals, get the game over and done with earlier on, then think about making changes. K,t chambers and holding and mastafi has played very well with those better with better quality players around him. Maybe that’s the answe r, maybe we will see a better mastafi playing with holding and co. I’m not kidding I think we have a great back four there and perhaps mavrapanos when he’s back might improve it still. With a top back four I really think we could challenge the league title or even win it, really I do. The back has been the one part that’s been broken, mended could bring riches behind are wildest dreams. Let’s hope so and we pick up league trophy in may.

    1. Love your optimism Robert. Not so sure myself about picking up the EPL trophy this time round but maybe can give it a good go next season.

  3. Depends on formation, and fitness, but I hope to see:

    Chambers Mustafi Holding Tierney
    Torreira Guendouzi
    Pepe Willock Saka

    Subs I would use: Bellerin, Ceballos, Nelson

  4. Doubt he’ll play Ozil; Emery has his reasons like resting player for almost 2 weeks after playing 70 minutes.

    Xhaka nailed on to start; if he’s breathing and can move enough to foul someone he’s starting.

    Auba starts, he’s done more this year than Emery’s”tactics” and without him we’re in rhe bottom half of league.

    Whether its Saka or Nelson only the foggy and disorienting space that is his tactical “genius” knows.

    We should easily glide past an injured and limping utd whose manager is on the ropes and fading. If we can’t, serious questions need to be asked regarding players and Emery.

    1. Ya…Ozil hardly has a chance to play under defensive minded team such as Emery! However,I don’t think there is hardly anyone in the team can provide the quality assist such as Ozil.
      What a waste !!

    2. You’ve got Emery well sorted Durand. Also love the sarcasm and cutting comments. Hey, wait a minute . . . you trying to steal my job? πŸ™‚

  5. I’m not too sure if Leno should be continued to be looked at as #1 : Martinez seems more assured and in command.

    Chambers at right back, playing alongside Holding and for want of a choice at the moment, it should be Luiz. Tierney must start at left back.

    Since Xhaka has been made captain it shouldn’t make him an automatic starter. DMs should be Torreira & Guendozi with Ceballos playing alongside at #8.

    Ozil must start at #10 playing behind Auba and Pepe.

    Chambers. Holding. Luiz. Tierney
    Torreira. Ceballos. Guendozi
    Pepe. Aubameyang.

    At the end of the day I’m not Emery and neither will he listen to any of us, so he will play his players and formation.

    1. That looks good to me Viju, the only problem being…we know he will play Xhaka.

      So I would suggest dropping Ceballos, then use hin in the 70th minute when he brings off Ozil.

      Of course if Bellerin is fit, he must come in and Chambers replaces Luiz.

      The bench would then read: leno-Luiz-Sako-Martinelli-Kolasinac…cover for every part of the field.

      Admin Martin, any reason why my answer to Gunner Jack was deleted on a previous thread?

      1. Yes, since Ceballos is an ideal replacement for Ozil, and keeping Emery’s Xhaka fandom in mind, bringing him on as Ozil’s sub can work. When watching the Watford reply I was quite convinced that Ozil-Ceba partnership will work quite well for us.

      2. Ken, he probably set out to delete one of my comments and yours copped it by mistake πŸ™‚
        This site is acting up for me lately. Will leave a message to Admin.

  6. What we want as the ideal line-up doesn’t matter, because Emery would probably use a three-CB formation or the diamond formation again

  7. For me:
    Chambers Luiz Holding Tierney
    Torreira Guendouzi
    Pepe Ceballos Martinelli

    Maybe Wilock for Guendouzi, Saka for Martinelli

    But I’m praying that Xhaka, Niles Mustafi, Ozil and Sokratis won’t start

    I wouldn’t mind 3 at the back if Bellerin were starting. Because Bellerin is more of a winger type player
    …Chambers, Luiz, Holding

    But Bellerin played today so won’t start Monday. So we should play 4 at the back

  8. i will go with

    Chambers Luiz Holding Tierney
    Torreira Guendouzi
    Pepe Ozil Saka

    Ozil can be subbed for Cebelos in the second half . Guendouzi for willock and Saka for MArtnneli . Bellerin isnt playing surely because he took part in the game with liverpool under 23’s

  9. One of.ozil or ceballos will play in the case where he goes for 2 up front. Ceballos will obviuosly have the edge over Ozil. If he goes for a front 3 then l see Saka in

  10. Without ozil arsenal will struggle he is pass master you can’t compare ceballos with ozil, Leno,chambers,Luiz,mustafi,kolasanic,torreira,xhaka,matheo,ozil,Pepe and auba

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