When everyone is fit who would you choose as Arsenal’s strongest Starting XI?

What’s Arteta’s best starting XI

After starting off the season so well, I wanted to take a moment to think about who Arteta’s top starting XI is. We’ve obviously had a few niggling injuries and Arteta probably hasn’t been able to play what he thinks is his strongest side yet, but taking away the injures and everything, here’s mine.

In goal David Raya just tops it over Aaron Ramsdale, although Ramsdale is a great keeper and did a lot to get us to where we are today, I just think Raya brings something different to the role. In the first few games of the season he looked really confident and calm at the back, but with a lot of talk around him and Ramsdale, I think it’s added a bit of pressure to his shoulders, but he has been really impressive so far in the red and white and has already come up against some tough competition, with consistent minutes and starts, I think Raya could end up being one of the world top goalkeepers.

In defence I’d always stick with a back four, Timber, Gabriel, Saliba and White. I know Timber is injured but when he recovers, I think he comes straight back into the team. Gabriel and Saliba have formed what looks to be an unbreakable partnership, so I don’t think he walks straight back into LCB but when he’s fit, I think he must be playing in some capacity and having played at LB previously for Ajax and the Netherlands, I’d expect him to be just fine there. White has really made that RB position his own and working well with Saliba, he looks to be the strongest player for the RB role.

In midfield I’d have to go for Rice, Partey and Odegaard. Although I’ve been very impressed with how Havertz has settled in, I think Partey just edges it past him, but it all does really depend of the opposition. If we need to defend more Partey and Rice in a pivot would work remarkably and I just think Partey gives us a bit more security. With Rice he’s been incredible since he’s arrived and I’d personally play him every single game I possibly could, he brings so much to the system and is such a dynamic player, Arsenal is just such a better team with him. And Odegaard of course, he creates so much a brings a look of fluidity to our midfield, arguably one of our best players and a true leader on the pitch.

In attack I’d go with Martinelli, Jesus and Saka. Martinelli bring so much pace down the left wing and same with Saka on the right, they both help spread play and open the game for more chances on goal. Both young and extremely talented wingers, arguably two of the best in the League. And Jesus goes front and centre for me, I feel like it’s always been his best position and where he’s most dangerous for opponents.


Timber. Gabriel. Saliba. White

Partey. Rice. Odegaard

Martinelli. Jesus. Saka

What’s your thoughts Gooners? What’s your top starting 11?

Daisy Mae


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  1. ———- Raya ———–
    Timber —- Saliba —- Gabriel —- Zinc
    Odegaard —— Partey —– Rice
    Saka —— Jesus —— Martinelli

    4-3-3 is the only starting formation Arteta names, so let’s also stick to that here

  2. Has to be Timber and White as the fullbacks, Zinchenko on the bench or competing for starts in the midfield.

    Simply can’t count on Zinchenko playing defense, so that’s why I drop him for Timber.

    Interesting to see selections when everyone is healthy.

    Saliba and Gabriel are locks at CB, sorry but no one beats them out.

    White is best RB hands down, and has consistency like Saliba.

    Timber inverts at LB, yet has great defense which Zinchenko lacks and always will.

    Back 4 picks itself honestly, and is a solid unit defensively with no holes.

  3. I’m not convinced Raya offers anything more than ramsdale does and his last performance raises questions on big game mentality. The rest of the team really picks itself with Kai, timber, esr, zen, trossard and Eddie on the bench. It’s a good bench and team but just light on striking options.

  4. For away games against the Madrid’s we could start with a 4 : 2 : 3 : 1 Partey and Rice as a double pivot.

    The 4: 3 : 3 formation if we happen to go behind or in attack mode





  5. I really cannot argue with the lineup that is being suggested. Jesus over Eddie any day for me but let’s not forget Trossaud who makes a real impact when chosen.

    1. Ramsdale
      White Saliba Gabriel
      Partey Zinchenko
      Saka Odegaard Rice Martineli

      Formation: 3-2-4-1

  6. I donno, Jorginho was really good alongside Rice vs City. Partey – Rice patnership on the other hand rarely impresses.

      1. Ramsdale
        White, saliba, Gabriel , timber
        Odegaard, rice, zichencho
        Saka, Jesus and martinelli

  7. Maybe Havertz for Jesus as all three of our cf options cant finish might as well pick the one who can win a header.

  8. We’ve seen Timber in one and a half competitive games for us and people already have in their best XI???

    I thought the bashing Havertz was getting after only a few games was ridiculous, but to now to judge a player after only 1.5 games is to remove oneself from objective reality.

    Don’t get me wrong, Timber was outstanding, but it was only two games, neither of which he even played a full match!

    1. Thing is Timber hasn’t come from no where, he was sensational last season. And Zinchenko has looked beatable in def this season. Timber is young, super talented and has so much potential too

  9. I agree with the line up being put out but given a choice of signing one player in January who will you choose between pedro neto and ivan toney?

    1. neither

      defence is the key, if Saliba and/or Gabriel get injured…remember last year, and we actually have fewer defence options than last season

      the Man City games this season (win) vs last season (lose) is due to a tight defensive set up denying them opportunities vs last seasons all guns blazing shoot out where we were blown away

      more attackers is not the way to victory against the elite, and it is our performances against the elite that will be difference between silverware and none

      and at £80m a pop, and no guarantee of 30 goals, it is just a risk we don’t need right now

  10. White MUST be right back for me (and not left back as the writer indicates) but I’m torn between Zinchenko and Timber for the left back spot. Obviously Saliba and Gabriel as our centre backs. Partey, Rice and Ødegaard in midfield and Saka, Jesus and Martinelli up front. It’s only who plays in goal is my ‘I’m not sure’ pick, either will do for me, but edging towards Raya.

  11. Daisy is turning to become my favourite writer in JA, outwitting Dan Smith.
    I do agree with 90% of your opinions.

    Keep it up Daisy. I hope to get more of your wonderful posts often. Thank you.

  12. When Timber is fully fit he will be a starter most likely at left back and White at right with both Zinchenko and Tomiyasu as back up. Zinchenko can even play midfield role. That is the time we as loyal fans can be relaxed knowing that the team can stand up to anyone. If it was not for Timber’s injury we would be enjoying the benefits now. I have a strong feeling that a fully fit Arsenal squad will be bad news for all opponents local and foreign.

  13. Any lineup without ZINCHENKO is bullsht… Y’all keep iqnoring that because of the shiny new toy in the block J TIMBER but thankGod M.A makes all the line up decisions.


    where will our creativity from defence come from?? Is it from the 4CBs???

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