My Arsenal team to face Newcastle – What is yours?

My Arsenal XI To Face Newcastle! by AT

After a comfortable victory over Bournemouth, Arsenal welcome Newcastle United to the Emirates stadium on Saturday as the Gunners look to continue their stay on top of the Premier League table. As a result of the hectic Christmas schedule, Arsene Wenger will have to rotate his squad once again and still field a side that can beat the Magpies. Now here’s how I would go about it.

Starting from the back, Nacho Monreal and Laurent Koscielny should come back into the side after a well-deserved breather in place of Kieran Gibbs and Per Mertesacker respectively. The German really needs to be rested and it will most certainly be exciting to see Gabriel and Koscielny play together. Another player who deserves a rest is young Hector Bellerin and I would bring in Matthieu Debuchy at right-back to face his former club. The former Newcastle star is in desperate need of some first-team football. Needless to mention, Petr Cech will be in goal.

Moving to the middle of the park, Mathieu Flamini will be available again and I’d bring him straight back into the team in place of Calum Chambers. Perhaps the two players that are most in need of a breather right now are Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil, but such is Arsenal’s injury crisis that the duo are irreplacable at the moment and simply have to start.

On to the front three, I would opt to bring Joel Campbell back into the side in place of Olivier Giroud, with Theo Walcott leading the line for the Gunners. In addition to the fact that Giroud needs a breather, Walcott will also relish the opportunity of playing as a striker. It is also worth noting that the last time the Englishman played up front against Newcastle, he scored a hattrick.

For me, this team has more than enough quality to see off the Magpies at the Emirates and keep Arsenal at the top of the table, whilst giving Wenger the opportunity to rest key players like Mertesacker, Bellerin and Giroud.

Starting XI: Cech; Debuchy, Gabriel, Koscielny, Monreal; Flamini, Ramsey; Campbell, Ozil, Oxlade-Chamberlain; Walcott.

Bench: Ospina, Mertesacker, Bellerin, Gibbs, Chambers, Iwobi, Giroud

This team should be strong enough to beat the Magpies? Agreed?


Tags Debuchy Ozil Walcott


  1. I wouldn’t mind giving Giroud a rest, but Walcott up-front?! He’s got to be one of the worst finishers in the league! I’d put Walcott in his best position (RW), and give Campbell a start up-front, and the two of them can rotate if needs be. Personally, I’d start with our strongest line-up, which means Giroud playing.

    We’ve got some really tough away games still to play, so every home game is a must win.

      1. @Davros

        Campbell’s barely kicked a ball in general for us, let along up-front. I just think he deserves a chance, especially considering Walcott has been given opportunities, and has an awful conversion rate. Ozil could easily be on 25 assists by now if Walcott had any composure in the final third.

        It’s so frustrating having the best play-maker in the world and not having a top striker to compliment him.

    1. The only question is ……… Does Walcott score goals. When you look at reality and facts the answer is YES.

      I don’t care about vague accusations such as “poor finisher” or remember the old “no football brain” narrative from his early years. Walcoot gives opposing defenders fits. If he is able to score, or even help other gunners to score, then he is helping Arsenal win. Done.

      Right now…. Giroud, Walcott, Campbell and Ox will ALL be needed at various times to help Arsenal win a trophy.

  2. As well as arsenal can’t afford to gamble the game against the magpies, giroud doesn’t deserve to be rested. He’s our top striker and also he need to play in other to meet up with the likes of lukaku and jarmy vardy at the top of goals. Walcott and chamberlin should start up front along giroud. Flamini, ramsey and ozil, debuchy, gabriel, and kosielny and gibbs. Cech should also refresh his clean sheet at new year!

  3. The League is the first priority.
    So play our best against the
    Magpies. Rest Ozil and Giroud
    against Sunderland in the FA Cup.
    Elneny and Sanchez will be available soon
    and any other player brought in.
    So we will be fine.

  4. Giroud’s goalscoring record against Newcastle is very good if I remember correctly, so I’d definitely play him.

    Newcastle at the Emirates is the biggest banker of a game we have in the league. A very weak team defensively, as well as having very limited threat going forward. Of course, we can still lose or draw, but if we do mess this one up, I really can’t see us winning anything.

    1. That’s why we shouldn’t rest Ozil for that game, he could easily get a hattrick of assists against them, taking him closer to Henry’s record.

          1. @godswill
            Count the chances he created against the goals scored from them…Dude is carrying a slight knock. With him on the physio table those chances/assists dwindle down to next to zero…
            We can score and win without him in a match or 2…

    2. These are the times we must rely on Wenger to make the best judgement.

      I always have opinions on tactics and player selection but Wenger knows who is more fit and who is more ready to start games than we do. And these things are important.

      As long as Wenger does not do something wildly stupid I must assume he is making decisions with much more info than is available to me.

  5. Anurag, happy New Year! Allow me to make 2 changes to your own personal starting line-up. I think the Boss shouldn’t slowdown Chambers development at DM by not starting him in the Newcastle match so soon after he has shown he can do the job in the Bournemouth game.

    With no disrespect to the Magpies, this is the sort of game the Boss should be using to develop Chambers to maturity as the Gunners’ DMF. Even our Ems FA Cup match against Sunderland should be given to Chambers to start to make it a 3 start in a row IMO.

    After the likely signing of the deep midfield lying Mohamed Elneny, the Boss may likely not sign a DMF in this window as he has likely slated Flamini and Chambers to be doing the Job pending when the injured Coquelin will join the duo.

    For his experience, the fatigued Flamini should be given a good rest period before the Boss will start him in our big BPL game away to Liverpool. And I think Ospina should be given the Newcastle League game and the Sunderland FA Cup match to start after his dropping the ball into his net which gave a Ucl match victory to Olympiakos at the Ems. It’s hi-time the Boss forgives him that error and allow him to start these 2 medium games I mentioned above.

    I think Cech will do with a 2 game rest to freshing up for the big away game at Anfield. Arsenal MUST win that particular big game to remain in commanding position at the top of the table. And ofcourse, I agree with you in toto that Giroud should start the Newcastle game on the bench to get some fresh air after becoming overplayed. He might be given a 2nd game rest start on the bench in the Ems Sunderland FA Cup game to make him more fresher for the Liverpool big game. My starts: Ospina; DebuchyDeAberuKoscielnyMonreal; RamseyChambers; OxchaboOzilChampbell; Walcott. Bench: Cech; BellerinRhino’GibbsAdelaideFlaminiGiroud. But we are all saying our own. The Boss has the final say.

  6. …………….Cech

    If we get a foothold well then Id bring on Iwobi and/or Adelaide taking off Walcott and/or Giroud. Also bring in Mesut taking off Flamini switching with Ramsey.

  7. i’M SORRY TO SAY THIS BUT, TRUTH IS BITTER. Theo could never get into my first 24. He is only good at kick and run. He is NOT A FINISHER. I would replace him with Gibbs to alternate with Machoo on the left, in order to completely shore up the left side. In central defence Gabriel shown us what we have seriously been lacking, a central defender who can complement Kosh instead of Per met who, in my opinion has always been our weak link and liability in the centre of defence. It should be Kosh and Gabriel in the centre, Bellerin on the riight.. Campbell in front of Bellerin as the compliment each other. Flammini and Ramsey will marshall the centre of Mid while Alex Iwobi plays upfront and Ozil just behind. For me, with all the current injuries, this ais a more balanced but still an attacking threat

    1. I wasn’t complaining about his finishing when he scored the screamer vs Man City. Though at Bournemouth he was extremely wasteful in front of the goal. Lets hope Alexis is back soon.

    2. And THAT is why you will never be a manager. Clearly you are letting your love of this vague term get in your way. (not a finisher).

      If a player scores goals, gives the opposing defense fits, and helps the team win – then he is a quality player.

      Does it really matter if you don’t like the way he “finishes” so long as he scores actual goals???

      Goals are facts. “Not a finisher” is not a fact.

    3. Poldi was statistically the best finisher in the league when he played for Arsenal. Shots on goal per shots taken, goals scored per shots taken, goals per minutes played.

      So if this “finisher” label was as important as you make it………. Poldi would still be with Arsenal and he would be player of the year, every year.

      Clearly you are not evaluating the situation as a whole. BTW – do you have ANY stats to back up your “not a finisher” accusation. I doubt it.

  8. League is our best chance of a trophy. We can’tafford to screw it up. Don’t underestimate Newcastle

    Play our best players and rest players against Sunderland fa cup.

    Btw, we should not underestimate Sunderland either. We will play a weaker side but they probably won’t. However, if we need to rest players FA Cup is the best time

    I feel so optimistic about winning the PL

    1. I believe Wenger will start his best team. Now if only we were certain about that. I can see 2 or 3 positions up for debate depending who you ask. CB, DM, Wing.

      It looks like Wenger prefers Mert/Kos, Flamini, and the Walcott/Campbell wing combo.

      But Ox, and Gabriel might have other ideas – and both really need more playing time to be at their best.

  9. couple of months back we did just few changes and Sheffield trashed us 3-0 why should we do changes if the next match is a week away?
    go with full strength win the match comfortably and make a statement. Gabriel should play more and Chambers as well

    Bellerin Gabriel Kos Monreal
    Chambers Ramsey
    Campbell Ozil Walcot

  10. Cech

    Bellerin Gabriel koscielny Monreal

    Ox Chambers Ramsey Walcott


    Take off Ozil around 70min and give him a break.
    Hopefully we should be winning by then.
    Would love to see Adelaide get some minutes

    1. Hello everybody!
      Bossielny back instead of BFG(hopefully permenant), debuchy for bellerin and Campbell for Giroud. Take off Mezut Özisst after 70 min. I think we will be fine with team

    2. I actually like your lineup. We still don’t know if Chambers can truly handle the DM role but this would be a good game to give him another try.

      Chambers has started at DM for Arsenal only twice to my knowledge. The first outing was a disaster and the last one was not bad at all. Clearly the coaching staff has been working with him. We shall see.

      In the end, however, I feel Wenger will trust Flamini more if he is healthy.

      1. @mohawk
        Just watched a vid about how Chambers did against Bournemouth. And dude bossed it well. A few more matches and he and Le Cog will be fighting for the DM spot…

  11. Campbell should play as CF, Ox on the right, walcott on the left. Give Bellerin a rest, give BFG some rest and give gibbs rest.

  12. Guys let’s b careful of rotation, don’t forget Newcastle 4 – 4 Arsenal. Any team can do damage. EPL remains our priority now

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