Arsenal trio Olivier Giroud, Mesut Ozil and Laurent Koscielny all returned to training today, four days before the trip to Liverpool, and could well be fast-tracked into the playing squad.
The French duo were given an extended holiday following their European Championship campaign, as was Mesut Ozil, after they helped their sides to reach the final and semi-final of the competition.
The Gunners could now opt to rush back Koscielny into the starting XI, with Gabriel Paulista having fallen foul of injury last Sunday against Manchester City, and with Per Mertesacker already having been ruled out for the remainder of 2016 at the very least.
Rob Holding, Calum Chambers and Nacho Monreal could also be in line to feature at centre-back, but with tough opposition in Liverpool awaiting this Sunday, it could be deemed a risk without a senior central option.
The Reds have looked sharp so far in pre-season, even beating Barcelona 4-0 only last weekend, but with home advantage, we should most definitely be taking all three points against our rivals.
Our midfield no longer picks itself, but I expect Wenger to opt for the most defensive approach of fielding Francis Coquelin alongside new signing Granit Xhaka from the start of the match, and possibly even playing Mohamed Elneny in a box-to-box role to stop our opponents from trying to over-run us on the break.
We have no idea if Kosc will be ready to play at the weekend, so I will not try and pick a back four, but I can see Alexis taking the left role, and Iwobi on the right, with Theo Walcott chosen to lead the line in the absence of both Olivier Giroud and Danny Welbeck.
The Ox has looked impressive in pre-season, and could also be involved, but it remains to be seen whether he would be trusted in what could be a tough match-up.
How do you expect Arsenal to line-up on Sunday?
I’d prefer to see Monreal on the left, I actually feel safer with Chambers at CB than Monreal, he should be on the left where he is best.
Xhaka-ElNeny could be the CM we need against Pool, our CB is light and still looking for a CF, Coquelin is great at being a wall but he hasn’t got the best passing, I feel ElNeny and Xhaka could control the CM better with their passing.
If we can get the lead then it might be worth bringing Coq on to sit behind Xhaka and ElNeny, maybe for Cazorla who is ACM in your formation.
I hope Elneny and Xhaka are our first choice CM this year
Not Coquelin and Cazorla?
No, I’d like to see a return to 4-4-2 with pacy goalscoring wingers and 2 up top. Didn’t Leicester win the league in a similar vein last year lol? and a certain double in ’97/98 springs to mind
Not really. Leicester played more like 4411 but in fact they always dropped to 433 during the game. Playing pure 442 means is very difficult to switch 433 bringing Albrighton and Drinkwater flanking Kante.
We may see a return to 433 or 4321 (which is a variation of 4411 as well) with the current crop. In any case, it is not what formation you want to play, it is assesing what players you have and based on that build your formation. If formation would have dictated our season we’d have signed by now all the players we needed/wanted.
Thats Kinda my point, I like the stability of 2 CDM, Wengers teams aren’t exactly rigid anyway and as long as Xhaka and Elneny run the Mid, the rest can flow around them
Bell CB CB Monreal
Walc:( Xhaka Elneny Santi
As long as Mo and Granit boss the centre the others can run riot
er I just realised I dropped Alexis for Theo 😀 but you should get my drift. I wonder if that has been AW plan all along
I wouldn’t be surprised to see Bielik playing in one of those CB positions.
Ramsey and Walcott will be starting for sure! ?
Now you got me at it! ?
Bellend—- HoldON— Douchebag— UNreal
Ooops! .. I better stop there.. mr Wonger’s done me head in, mate. ?? what a ?
Not sure why is this thumbed down. Bielik inspires so much calm around him that it makes me believe this guy is going to be at home at CB and not at DM. Younger and a bit more composed than Holding right now.
Is that You Bob? ?
The games at the Emirates, mate. ?
It would be too risky to start with any of the players who have just returned to training, especially Koscielny.
You will find out Why! … When Mr Wonger takes that Gamble! ? No doubt that he will. ?
We should never be in a position where we have to rush player back early because we are not prepared to start the season without them.
We have had the whole summer to prepare for the Liverpool to get in player to cover the shortfall in quality due to Ozil Giroud and Kosileny absence but have yet again showed ourselves to be the great pretenders.
These little things add up against us when it comes to renew contracts. Why on earth the likes of Ozil and Sanchez would want to stay at arsenal for another 3 – 5 years to challenge for fourth spot and an FA cup is beyond me. I’ll probably get thumbed down for saying that but who cares it’s the truth!
Ozil and Sanchez are apparently ‘Not in any Rush’ to renew their contracts!
Thats a very diplomatic way of putting it! ?
They aren’t, if we don’t reinforce the squad this summer Ozil and Sanchez are leaving next season, it’s as simple as that.
The game is at the Emirates
so Arsenal should win.
Liverpool are in disarray
so again Arsenal should win.
However on the day anything could happen.
How Arsenal completes the transfer window
is still to be determined.
But it’s very early doors and it won’t be till Xmas
that we will have any real idea about the league standings.
I believe the top 11 at Arsenal are good quality.
Then we have 7 adequate subs for 10-20 mins max.
Below them we have the 7-9 sub standard token players
who I hope we will never have to call upon to play.
Injuries therefore will be critical in the quality of out match day squad.
We are seriously in danger of losing Ozil, Alexis and Bellerin next summer unless a miracle happens
Just a warning.
Liverpool will close us down very quickly and move fast with numbers so we wont have enough time on the ball the midfield and defense most be well tuned with the midfield and the out field players must defend and go for the ball straight away if they loose it so the essence for the liverpool match is one touch football for the ball to end in their net direct football we did it with the 8 0 win
I think it’ll be a tight match but we’lll win 1-0 or 2-1
so, our first match and we are trying to piece together a back line…
It’s Unbelievable…. Right? ?
Far and Beyond, all jokes!
Roll up … Roll up!… ???
For One more season Only!
The Circus is Back in Town ????
Arsenal fc are proud to present and welcome back,
The Delusional world of Ebenezer, Staring Mr Wonger and Son! ?
Assuming Kos does not start
Bellerin Chambers Holding Monreal
Ox Ramsey Iwobi
Bench: Ospina Debuchy Gibbs Santi Walcott Campbell Akpom