What changes will Mikel Arteta make to the Arsenal midfield?

The Mikel Arteta revolution could start with the Arsenal midfield.

Once the Arsenal midfield is sorted out I have no doubts that we will see a massive upturn in results and performances.

The defence simply would not come under so much pressure if the midfield did a better job of providing cover and the forwards would score more regularly with an increase in service.

Arteta will know this of course and I am certain that will determine his strategy and team selection tomorrow.

I feel confident that the former Man City assistant will go with a midfield of four starting with Lucas Torreira in the defensive midfielder role just in front of the defence.

In front of the Uruguayan, I am of the opinion that Arteta will plump for Joe Willock and Matteo Guendouzi.

Last but not least I expect a return to the first team for Mesut Ozil in front of the midfield and below the forwards being the creative force we are screaming for him to become.

So, this is the midfield I believe that Arteta will select tomorrow.

Lucas Torreira
Matteo Guendouzi
Joe Willock
Mesut Ozil

Now, Arteta could easily make a number of changes to that quartet. Youngsters Reiss Nelson and Emile Smith Rowe could easily force their way in and in fact, so could Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

There is even a possibility that Nicholas Pepe could be dropped into the midfield on the right-hand side but based on an educated guess, the four listed are, in my opinion, the most likely midfield starters.


  1. We should push to get two players in January. Thomas Partey and Lewis Dunk. 70m pounds will get them both.

    As for the midfield tomorrow, a midfield 3 of


      1. Maybe he will recover his besy form playing under Arteta, imagine how destructive we will be against our oponents.

        1. YES,and “maybe” I will be the next Mr Universe! Meanwhile, back on Planet Earth,, WHERE REALITY LIES…..! GUESS WHAT, PROFESSIONAL AND HUNGRY MANAGERS LIKE ARTETA DON’T PLAN BY USING “MAYBE”. They leave that to those who, despite all the mass of evidence of his laziness for the last four seasons, still fool themself that “maybe” will happen. Duh!

    1. Spot on, Luiz infront of Cbs then Torreira next to him and Ozil as a 10 in order to provide 3 players upfront. I would be tempted to switch Willock for Torreira, to add B to B threat.

      Once Luiz sits in front of those Cbs, it is safer and we can play going forward as he does well. No need then to have 2 players dedicated in defending at midfield!

    2. @Skills1000

      Luiz isn’t a midfielder, he’s a crap defender. Secondly, he and Ozil should never be on the pitch representing Arsenal.

      Until Arteta can bring in reinforcements, he’d be better off picking youth/reserve players over the big egos.

  2. No, Arteta would most likely play two midfielders and one no 10

    Since he has to select the players based on their seniority, Xhaka, Torreira and Ozil would start

    1. You are right this time, I think.

      Xhaka will definitely play, I have no doubt about that, especially after Arteta praised him yesterday.
      Torreira also seems a sure option.
      The third could be Ozil, Willock, or Guendouzi, but due to lack of creativity with the Xhaka-Torreira combo, he will likely go with Mesut.

  3. Well playing the player in the photo will be next to useless

    I rate Mkhi slightly higher than Ozil. Unfortunately he isn’t here and Ceballos is injured

    Try Wilock, Lacazette, Smith Rowe or Nelson in Ozil’s position. They can’t be that much worse.

    For midfield I would go for:
    Torreira, Guendouzi, Wilock/Lacazette , Pepe and Martinelli

  4. I know Mikel said he will give everybody a chance. He will start on a clean slate. That is the best thing to do in this case. But I don’t think someone like Ozil will suddenly change his attitude and work for the team. This is man who has worked with many of the best coaches and has clashed with as many. I suggest Arteta works with the players who want to play for Arsenal and are proud to be here instead of going with senior players who think they are doing Arsenal a favour by being here.

  5. I don’t guys, I don’t rate Willock at all, from what I’ve seen, he’s average. I really like to be wrong about him, but I don’t see anything to be hyped about same thing with Reis Nelson.

    It’s like we’re forcing issues same goes for Nketiah. Why isn’t he playing at Leeds and why did we even loan him.

    I watch Saka and I definitely see a great player in there even with Maitland Niles. But Willock, Nelson and Nketiah remind me of young Walcott, JET, Anichobe or Akpom

    1. AMN seems to have roughly the potential of Oxlade Chamberlain – to become a sub in a top team or a starter in a mid-table team.
      Saka slightly above that, I feel.

      But I agree with you that Willock, Nelson, and Nketiah will likely end up starters in the Championship or subs in a mid-table Prem club. Let’s give them some more time, but I just don’t feel the hype.

  6. Mikel play luiz in the midfield alongside torreira,try lacca in the no.10 role with pepe and matinelli on the flags and auba as no.9.let the defence comprise of saka and Niles as fullbacks and holding/macro and sokratis as centre backs…

  7. Arteta has watched Arsenal several times in his 3 1/2 years at Sheiky.
    So Arteta being the diligent man he is will already have compiled
    a detailed dossier on every Arsenal player over some several years.
    His advantages over Emery are immense having also played in the league 8 years
    and now being fluent in English able to communicate much more easily
    with players and to the fans as well something Emery was unable to do.
    How on earth Emery with no prior knowledge of the language the squad or the league
    led Arsenal to 5th in the PL and to the EL final I don’t know.
    Was he a genius or lucky?
    Emery was in trouble by late October so Arteta would have known
    the Arsenal Manager’s job could come available soon.
    Therefor Arteta has had nearly two months to prepare for the interview
    and to analyse the Arsenal squad and develop strategies to improve things.
    He had applied for the job less than 2 years ago so new the kind
    of questions and issues the board would present him.
    So Arteta with so many advantages and with a squad which missed CL by just one point
    in the PL and made the EL final should do just as well even better by May.

    1. Yeah no wilock please…he is over rated and is completely useless. Can’t hold the ball, no passing range n can’t score even if the net is empty.

      1. Exactly, same goes for Reiss Nelson and Nketiah. They aren’t as good as we’d like them to be.

        I honestly don’t want another Walcott situation where better young players are over looked because those 3 mentioned players are overhyped

  8. If Arteta in his 1st Arsenal starting XI making in the PL for Bournemouth match gets his starts and subs for the match correctly, and his starts play very correctly in the match to the very best of their game playing abilities for Arsenal. I believe us Gooners will have no any cause that could make us anxious as to whether Arsenal will beat Bournemouth or not. For certainly and most certainly, Arsenal playing at away in the PL tomorrow will undoubtedly beat AFC Bournemouth.

  9. The Boxing Day Test has begun; New Zealand has won the toss, put Australia in, first ball bowled to Burns and Australia 1 for 1!
    All flight from NZ to Melbourne were booked out.

  10. Guenduzi is one of the most overrated players I have ever seen. He brings almost nothing to the game. He can’t be trusted in the defending or attacking thirds. Luiz in the midfield? This isn’t a video game. He can’t cover isolated areas so you all want to give him a bigger area? No thanks.

  11. We have the least creative midfield I can remember at Arsenal. We have always had good playmakers. At the moment we don’t yet they run around like headless chickens not knowing what to do. We have not replaced Santi or Aaron Ramsey and until we do get quality replacements we are going to struggle and be boring at the same time.

  12. Well Arteta has said Xhaka is in his plans. In fact, he has said he even wanted to get him for Manchester City at some point. I don’t particularly dislike Xhaka, I think despite his occasional catastrophic errors, he is the best choice of CM amongst Ceballos, Willock and Guendouzi. Could Xhaka stop his blunders under Arteta? I really hope so.

    1. I keep asking myself this question. Why does every manager select Xhaka in their lineup no matter what we the armchair manager say?
      Xhaka has been a target from us season after season but each manager seems to see something in him that we professional keyboard warrior managers can’t see.
      He reminds me of Jordan Henderson of Liverpool. We have never rated him from day one but each and every manager that had managed liverpool in the last 8 or so seasons has made him their first choice CM.
      Xhaka has been trusted by, Wenger, Emery, Ljungberg, Arteta even if nearly the majority of our fanbase can’t stand him.

  13. Agreed totally with Arsenalman and Sean Williams comments however I disagree with about Walcott. His record is there for us all to see.
    I believe the midfield should be Xhaka, Torreira, Willock, Nelson.
    Özil as the first sub and Guendouzi left out. ESR playing U21/U23. Having watch Guendouzi being preferred to others simply because he was bought the midfield has deteriorated as his defensive positioning and lack of mobility have harmed the team. ESR needs more U21 game time as he is not ready. Özil can prepare for his move to Turkey and Arsenal can invest in a new creative midfielder to replace Carzola and a central defender.

  14. Willock? Willock? PLEASE no! He has been given more than enough opportunities, he showed a total zero. He should be loaned out till 2021 and reevaluated then. But no chance he will be worthy of a starter Arsenal spot till then. And I strongly doubt if he will ever be, but we should avoid a new Gnabry case.

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