Arsenal v Aston Villa early predicted line up – no big surprises

No doubt there will be quite a few fans calling for some of the players that featured in the Eintracht Frankfurt game that are not normally in the Arsenal first team to be given a chance against Aston Villa on Sunday but I just do not see that happening.

Bernd Leno will return between the sticks and the backline will be the same one we have become used to seeing this season, the midfield will have Granit Xhaka and Matteo Guendouzi as starters I am fairly certain of that and both Mesut Ozil and Dani Ceballos are very likely to return to the starting line up.

Both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe are nailed on to start-up front, in effect, the same team that started against Watford.

This then is my predicted line up.


The reason I feel that Sokratis and Ozil will return is that they were rested and both Pepe and Ceballos started from the bench on Thursday night, a kind of mini rest for them as well.

That said, knowing Unai Emery as we all do it would not surprise me if he did keep faith with the likes of Willock and Saka in some form but for the life of me I just do not see which players he would drop.

The same applies to Rob Holding, I just cannot see Emery starting him, though I am expecting him to get some game time from the bench.

Anyway, that is my prediction, what line up do you think Emery will go with?


  1. gotanidea says:

    I agree with your prediction, but Emery would be a nutjob if he uses the diamond formation again

    I understand that he wants to play safe by fielding a lot of senior and tactical midfielders, but the team will lose the penetrations on the wings

  2. derrick kariuki says:

    you know what? we may underestimate Aston but get it from me,if Emery starts xhaka we may end up with only one point or even non.if torreira isn’t fit yet I’d rather settle for chambers at the middle. our problem isn’t Luiz.xhaka’s stupid mistakes and lack of proper defensive cover which is his job is our main problem

  3. S.J says:

    Your selection leaves us with no left winger, Ozil and Ceballos are not wingers and not sure about the shape either.

    Difficult to predict Emery’s formation this days. Looking forward for the team sheet on Sunday

  4. Innit says:


    1. Thats a good prediction Innit,but i think Torreira and Nelson are not there yet, Unai will still maintain faith in Xaka and Guendouzi, then Ozil comes in for either Ceballos or Willock.

  5. S.J says:

    If I were Emery I will play this team selection.


    Martinelli, Ozil, Pepe..

    Guendouzi, Xhaka..

    Kolasinac, Mustafi, Sokratis, Chambers..


    Subs –
    A. M-Niles
    E. Martinez

    1. Clueless Emery says:

      Good line up but we all know emery may mess things up with poor selections.

      1. Loose Cannon says:

        Add to it, the men – Xhaka, Socrates, Kolasinac and Luiz will get “scared” of the boys – Grealish, Moraes, Luiz and our own Henri Lansbury!Hoping for a win, expecting a draw and would not be stunned by a loss if that brings down the curtains to Unai’s fiasco with AFC.

  6. If I were unia I would play Leno,Chambers, Holding Luis Kulasinac,Torreira, Guedouizi, Ceballos, Papa, saka and auba

  7. gunner says:


  8. ……….Leno
    Chambers ..Luiz..Holding…Kolasinac
    Torreira ..Ceballos …Guendouzi
    Pepe ……Aubameyang…… Saka

    1. SAGooner says:

      I know this one is a dream but I like it!

      1. ?? I know it’s a dream too..

      2. David mbathu says:

        If am Unai I would go with :Leno ,chambers,luiz,h olding,kolasinac,toreila,guedouzi,martinelli,pepe,cebalos,Auba.

  9. Palmer17 says:

    Front 3 I Hope is saka aubamayang Pepe

  10. Dan kit says:

    That lineup is is the exact team I would say he will field admart.
    He needs to get his team spot on tomorrow no excuses now .

  11. Sue says:

    Guess who made it into TOTW for EL match day one? Saka, Chambers & Martinez ?

  12. ThirdManJW says:

    We can get away with the odd poor selection, but if Emery continues to select a lot of rubbish players in the starting XI, then we’re in trouble. I said before the Watford game, I would be very surprised if we won, because we Xhaka, Ozil, and Luiz all starting. Add to that, AMN, and Sokratis’s shocking form.

    But the main criticisms should have been reserved for Ozil, Xhaka, and Luiz. They all have tons of experience, yet where is it? Where is the leadership from them?

  13. Truth says:

    Nice to see that we can still get excited about who plays. Despite our PL results.

    I would not play both Ceballos and Ozil but rather give the nod to Ceballos as a creative spark. Have him supported by LT and Guendouzie.

    In defense, I would play Chambers as CB.

  14. dudu says:

    Please when is Emery leaving am tired ? of tinkering

  15. Viju Jacob says:

    Slightly off topic…thinking ahead, it will not be a bad idea to play AMN as a defensive midfielder, considering that the natural midfielder has played in defense for over a year. He may be better than Xhaka and Guendozi, or at the least provide stiff competition to then both. But then, with Emery one will never know.

    1. ThirdManJW says:

      I would also like to see AMN play in the middle, but his passing can be very sloppy at times. He consistently gives the ball away so often, and against Watford, I actually lost count. Central midfield is the one position, more than any other, where you have to be an excellent passer. Look how many times Xhaka puts us into trouble with his passing.

  16. Artsenal says:

    I agree S.j but Torritra for Xaka.

  17. Jim wall says:

    Chambers. Sok. Luiz kolas

    Amn. Guddez

    Pepe. Auba. Saka…

  18. Grandad says:

    How can anyone justify selecting Socratis?The guy is a complete liability like his friends Mustafi and Luiz.If Emery plays Socratic and Luiz, Aston Villa will score for sure.

    1. Jim wall says:

      I wouldn’t select him either only for injuries we need to….
      If everyone was fit I would play this team….


      Bell Chambers holding Tierney

      Guddez. Torrer
      Pepe lacca. Auba

      1. Mohsan says:

        That will be my starting lineup as well and I think that’s the best line up which gives us everything. But we all know what our dum manager will do..the dude could not win champions league once with neymar, mbappe, cavani n shit load of other talent. The least he can do is to put the right team in pitch when we have everyone fit.

        1. Jim wall says:

          Think the same mohsan,
          Emery is not the man for us,
          He would fit well with the likes of villa..everton…Leicester..westham…he might get them into europa league ,
          But were a big club and we need to be challenging for premiership and champion league

  19. gidizpierre says:





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