Arsenal to start with strongest XI against Lyon?

I am not trying to tell the Arsenal manager what to do, and I doubt very much whether he would take much notice if I did, but I will go ahead and give Arsene Wenger my thoughts on the matter of which 11 players I think he should pick to start the first of our Emirates Cup games anyway.

For me it would have to be the strongest possible Arsenal side, although I do not think that the Gunners should abandon the usual pre-season principles of giving some fringe players and the most likely of the youngsters coming up through the academy a chance to shine in front of the home crowd.

Wenger spoke at length the other day about sticking with the policy of promoting from within and not jumping on the Premier League bandwagon of throwing money around like a crazed lottery winner and I do not expect him to do anything different today.

I just think that we should start with a strong team and then bring on subs as we go. We do still need to get ready for the Community Shield and the start of the season and so 45 minutes with the team that is likely to start those games would be a good idea.

Also, that way should give us the best possible start and hopefully get the game won by halftime because Wenger does want to win these games and get on a roll. So assuming that the prof has the same idea, what do you think that strongest XI will be? This would be mine.

Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal
Coquelin, Cazorla
Walcott, Ozil, Wilshere

That may seem harsh on Aaron Ramsey but he should get the second half to state his case for starting in the middle and I think Jack is better out wide, although there is a strong case for Akpom on the left as well. What do you think Gooners?

Tags Akpom Wenger Wilshere


  1. I honestly don’t want to see Giroud in our first 11 anymore. It screams mediocracy to me for Arsenal to have him as our best forward.
    I would try Theo up top and Ox or Ramsey on the right.

      1. Am tired of this our #12. why not give Akpom a Chance. I enjoy watching a dynamic striker not one old fashioned electric pole.

          1. Giroud is not world class but he is a good goal scorer. Have to admit he is a good striker.

            1. Hes good just not against a top defence, lets see how he does next week against terry and co!

              1. You could say that about the whole team. Giroud has worked hard and scored many goals for this club. It’s not his fault Wenger can’t put a team together.

    1. GDS (Giroud Derangement Syndrom) is a devastating psychological illness that afflicts some Arsenal fans in the prime of their gooner lives. As of yet there is no cure.

      1. @mohawk,
        It seems you do have GDS (Giroud Dick-Sucking Syndrome).
        It is a devastating psychological illness that affects a few Arsenal fans in the prime of their gooner lives. It is also postulated that these people could be Spurs fans in disguise trying to drag us down with them as a mediocre club playing mediocre players. It is theoretically suggested that these people can do themselves a favour and join SPURS but this is highly unlikely. That is why as of yet, there is a cure…ME.

    2. Again giroud scores and again he shows his worth. He was involved in another goal too. What else do you want from a striker??????

    3. Giroud scored once assists another and involved in another goal.that’s 3 goals that giroud was well involved in..what else are you haters asking for????giroud and ozil motm today… Well done oli and mesut

  2. what’s the point???

    We dont spend like City, United and Chelsea.
    Even Liverpool spent £32 million on Benteke

    Arsenal are a small club till Wenger leaves. Big clubs spend Big money on Big players
    we have NO ambition

    Wenger MUST Sign ALL these 3 players MIMINMUM
    1. POGBA

    If not then WENGER OUT

    1. The first two players no club in the world has a realistic chance of signing apart from the silly rumors circulating around . Carvahlo is a Jorge Mendes guy, a person with whom we never deal with.

      We need two good players- 1 striker for the starting line up and one back up DM for sure. But none of the names you mentioned is a realistic target. If Benzema does become available when Real sign someone else, he would be a very welcome addition. And the Samper kid sounds promising as well. I just don’t see any other striker other than Benzema who would be available and match our wage system and philosophy.

    2. and if wenger has REAL ambition add these two players
      4. Hummels
      5. Reus

      pogba, carvahlo, lewandowski, hummels and Reus may almost make us PL contenders

      get rid of the deadwood ie. giroud, welbeck, oxlade, wilshere, mertsacker, campbell, sanogo, arteta, flamini


    3. I’m with you, you big beautiful thing you!!!
      If Wenger doesn’t bring Zidane and Pele back from retirement in the next 4 hours MINIMUM and bring out the form they were in in the peak of their careers I think he should be given a good spanking!

    4. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    5. and to add to them i also want:
      4. Ronaldo
      5. Messi
      6. Cryuff
      7. Pele
      8. Maradona
      9. Obama
      10. Pope
      11. Jesus

      else its definitely WENGER OUT for me

  3. Well, Giroud is starting, with Iwobi on the left and Martinez at goal. I hope they are all on the bench this year behind a top striker, Sanchez and Cech respectively.

  4. With there likely being a lot of rotating occurring over two games in as many nights I think predicting the line-up is about a safe bet as a lottery ticket… Everyone just cross their fingers for no f@#king injuries!! I actually wouldn’t mind if Theo, Jack, Ramsey and Ox played their pre-season games bubble wrapped from the waist down.

  5. Here’s to an Arsenal win and hopefully a private conversation between Wenger and Lacazette

  6. Arsenal: Martinez, Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Coquelin, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Iwobi, Giroud

  7. 3.30 am in New Zealand
    but I am up following
    the team. I am so loyal 🙂
    Listening to radio coverage.

    1. It’s 10:41 AM in Chicago
      but I am up following
      the team. I am so loyal 🙂
      Watching with only commentary, no background noise.

        1. Aye it ain’t funny. ESPN3 screwing us over here in the States worse than Ozil does humans with his shoulder drop.

          1. watched the same way, switched to Spanish commentary that did have background noise, lol. It was just so awkward with just the commentator.

            1. haha yeah, but then the english finally brought it back around the 55th minute so it was good again

  8. Did you see the slow turn of Per allowing the Lyon player to slide behind him and shoot???
    Good Save Martinez!

        1. That solves the issue of #1 striker at Arsenal. It does nothing to cure GDS. Sufferers will still go bonkers at the site of Giroud, his likeness or even his name. There is no cure.

          1. We’ll pray for his poor soul. Non believer but I cant think of anything to cure such a debilitating psychological disorder. I heard someone in Egypt came close to a cure and that the answer was in receiving large doses of logic. Not sure on the means of delivery though.

    1. Yes he is not good enough. I paying subscription to watch arsenal so I entitled to demand a better striker.

    1. So an hour and a half ago you were done with him, and said he screams mediocrity. Then he scores, and ok, he’s fine?

      Plastics man, I wish you guys would shuffle off to Chelsea and stop embarrassing us

    1. we are always thinking of what other teams are doing, swear other teams are scared of us…

    1. No. I am stilk here. To me he is still not good to watch, I still demand a better striker. Coyg.

      1. Wai wait wait….So a lucky shoulder goal and two point blank passes any person playing football in any league should make and suddenly Giroud is very good?
        I think you guys should sign me up on this bandwagon. If you can’t beat delusional f*ckers, join them at least until May 15, 2016 when reality has hit again.
        I spit in disgust. I really hope we don’t sign any ST or any other player for that matter.

    2. Don’t want Giroud out, just want somebody better. An Emirates Cup match is just a friendly. Sanogo scored 4 goals in it last season. I like seeing Giroud do well, but I’m not naive enough to think he’s good enough to bring us the title.

      1. These are exactly my sentiments. I don’t mind him as a number 2 to a talented striker.
        He is a good plan B.

      1. I could but I am
        watching the live updates.
        so yeah following both 🙂
        10-10 at the break
        but we are lucky.

    1. Sure Wenger will make subs.

      Lyon must come out more in 2nd half, if we make subs they could be in goals and also get some confidence.

      Dont think anyone who started will lose confidence after that half.

      Would of liked to see Akpom with Walcott

    2. He’ll be on tomorrow with our B-team defence Cech, Bellerin, Chambers, Gabriel and Monreal – how times have changed, not a bad defence line-up. Lol.

    1. @RobertTheGooner commented above that Ox was “deadwood.” Seriously. That was his comment.

    2. Spot on. Always believed he was way better than Sterling too. I pray he stays fit and shines this season.

    1. Sterling definitely over priced, but he is younger than Ox and has great potential. Whether he will pull his head out his ass and realise it is another story.

      Glad we didnt get him, Ox will explode this season if he stays fit.

      1. Lacazette Offside (when he did not really need to be). If it was Giroud there would be comments suggesting he is just a lumbering idiot who should retire immediately.

        1. Was there today and watched Lacazette and Fekir more closely than our lot – not much to see to be honest. One half chance and half a dozen poor touches, no service – looked properly dejected.

  9. Nice first half. Thought iwobi looks very classy, nice touches, great close control, making himself available and top quality finish for goal(s). He looks confident and could be another excellent product of the academy.

    1. Welbeck has a new rival for his squad position. Iwobi Welbeck Gnabry and Ox fighting it out to replace Sanchez and Walcott.

  10. Another Lyon player down…

    Are we reaching an era where other players get injured but our Gunners don’t?

  11. I know this is pre=season but I would like to see at least some physical pressure on Arsenal. This is sometimes the weak spot and we should see how/if they can handle it.

  12. Good strikers do NOT miss those chances. In the EPL that is the difference between a point or 3!

    1. LOL so even the best strikers to have ever played football for the past 200 years NEVER missed a single goal they should have scored hahaha. The hate is real

    2. You’re just incorrect. I’ve seen even Aguero miss the easiest sitters you daft Muppet

      1. You are a mediocracy loving idiot, that’s what you are. Let’s stick with Giroud, he has been so good for three years.

    3. That is just ridiculous. Good striker hit more of their chances than average strikers. But EVERY striker misses chances. Did you see Messi in the world cup??

    4. If you watched Aguero last year you would have seen him miss 6 for every one he scored, shot conversion rate less than OGs – some of you guys are really funny/silly/ignorant/stupid, not sure which.

  13. Özil & Oliver has done things today that even the most ignorant Mesut-hater couldn’t possibly dismiss as anything less than world class.

      1. yeah no Ozil hate now. My fingers are still suffering from all the typing they had to do trying to defend him article after article on this site.

  14. This is also the era where the probability of us scoring from a set piece is a lot higher.

  15. Santi, Ozil, Sanchez

    Have we ever had better set piece takers.

    Also why OG and mert are important for us I guess

  16. this is amazingly nice but…we in trouble…this nice performance will make Wenger not buy and the same excuse will be used to foul and convince the fans that we don’t need additions.

    1. We signed him early in this transfer windows. Kind of low profile transfer but what a signing

  17. Great move between giroud and ozil, giroud and ozil were simply class today….this is why we need giroud in our team. WHere are all the haters?

    1. No one mention Ramsey. Quality goal and assist. He also break and assist the assist (Giroud) for Ox goal. Many times he found Ozil (who is very evasive today, impossible to mark) with accurate long ball. He inject the kind of urgency and speed to our flowing football.
      Dont want to read too much to pre-season, we put 4 past Benfica last year but this year the team is playing much better than last year

  18. For me, it’s a very hard pick for MOTM between Ozil and Ramsey. A pure masterclass from both of them, the vision and placement of their passes was extraordinary!
    There’s going to be a serious battle for midfield places. The fake-shot pass Santi did to Walcott was pure candy..

    1. agree. Seeing Ramsey & Ozil like that was a throwback to 13/14 season 🙂
      But how can Santi not be in the lineup… so many decisions

  19. I think best arsenal transfer of the season is loaning out Yaya Sanogo!! It gives extra space for other more talented youngsters such as Adelaide, Iwobi and Akpom!!

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs