Would this Arsenal line-up challenge Man City this weekend?

Arsene Wenger lined his Arsenal team up in a Conte-esque 3-4-2-1 formation against Middlesbrough on Monday night, and it remains to be seen whether the system change will remain.

After the 2-1 victory, it was revealed that Rob Holding had only trained in the new formation on two occasions, prior to using it in the Premier League match, and while the result proved positive, the overall performance did not impress.

Wenger will have time to work on the formation this week before taking on the Citizens at Wembley for a place in the FA Cup final, but looking at the line-up used on Monday, I would expect some personnel changes.

Shkodran Mustafi, Hector Bellerin and Theo Walcott were all overlooked against Boro, despite playing key roles in our season thus far, and the thinking from the best UK colleges of thought think at least two of those will likely start against City.

My personal 3-4-2-1:

Mustafi  Koscielny  Holding
Bellerin      Ox          Elneny        Iwobi
Walcott                   Ozil

I know the above is not how Arsene will line the team up, but I can see Iwobi and Oxlade working perfectly in the above rolls. Ox has the legs, strength and work-rate needed to play that role in my opinion, and Iwobi also has the stamina and ability to get up and down the flank as well as bringing plenty to our attackers.

I know Alexis has said he prefers to play in behind the striker, and Wenger is unlikely to want to upset his wishes, but Walcott can play a crucial role in countering teams at speed as Hazard does for Chelsea, and Alexis is our only in-form goalscorer who needs to be leading the line.

The Chilean would give us the best chance of getting on the scoreboard this weekend whether playing as the striker or not, and we should utilise that.

Would the above be our best possible line-up in that system?

Tags Arsenal Man City


  1. Datguywelbz says:


    3-4-1-2 Prefer to have Gibbs as a wing back, if he can play like he did vs Basel then it would be perfect.

  2. ThirdManJW says:

    I like it, but I would change Gibbs for Iwobi, drop Walcott for Perez, drop Ozil for Coquelin, and change Coquelin and Ox around. Ozil is the key one to drop, because for anyone who’s been watching us against big teams this season, Ozil goes missing a lot! Cannot afford to play against City with effectively, a man down, if Ozil plays.

    1. Janssen says:

      Perez is not available I think.

  3. Fatboy Gooney says:

    I very much doubt that Wenger has the Balls to stick with that 3-4-3 formation against Man city. We would Seriously get forked up.?

  4. Janssen says:

    I like the idea of 3 at the back. I think part of the success of 3 at the back rests on the ability of the wing-backs to both drop back as a fullback and to function and a genuine midfield player.

    I thought Ox performed that role pretty good against Boro on the right side. I think he might be more disciplined and physical than Theo in defense. So I would keep Bellerin on the bench and Ox on the right. If you play Gibbs on the left instead of Monreal and Welbeck in front of him on the left (if he is available) it could be a good set up. I do think we need to stick with Xhaka not because he has been stellar but simply because we need to give him as much time as possible to get used to the PL. If you don’t play your most expensive purchase at this stage of the season, when will you play him. Give him and Elneny time to form a partnership. We have very little to lose by playing Xhaka unless you write him of which I think is too early. (Of course if Bayern really want him I would listen)

    Sanchez – Welbeck (if not available play Iwobi he has had enough rest and is still hopefully part of our future)

  5. gotanidea says:

    If it is 3-4-3, I would like to see:






    Apart from some mistakes, overall the last game’s GK and defenders worked well. Mustafi will help us to dominate if he fits.

    I still trust Coquelin’s defensive ability over Xhaka. He just need to be re-assigned back as a DM. Remember how well he played last season when he could fully focus on the DM position. Not like this season where he has to play as B2B midfielder sometimes. Xhaka can be great, but he needs time. Xhaka should be assigned if the opponent plays with tall target man and tall midfielders.

    I feel that Elneny has more accurate forward passes (not side and back passes) than the other midfielders this season. Ramsey needs time to regain his focus.

    Ox has shown that as a right wingback, his power, speed and dribbling skills could be a big threat to any opponents. I think Monreal needs some rest and Gibbs can help us with his speed.

    I prefer to see three players that can be attacking midfielders, possess good ball control, speed and good dribbling skills in the front, rather than having a tall target man, a speedster and a “play-safe” AM.

  6. SoOpa AeoN says:


    Mr. Potato Head won’t play 3 at the back against citeh

    & our opinions really don’t count

  7. The troll formerly known as robin vanpayslip says:

    That system was a farce. We showed no better defensive organisation but lost possession too.

    It was only because it was Middleborough that we got away with it. Wenger’s only foray into tactics was a joke too.

  8. Muffdiver says:

    Mate told.me.jesus is playing

    Hope he’s messing about.
    Last thing we need is Gabriel jesus

  9. Fatboy Gooney says:

    This cracks me up ?? How could a change of formation make any difference when we have the same bunch of bottlers standing in a different position? ???
    Think about that for a moment or two,then again, take as long as you want, it won’t change much.?

    1. SoOpa AeoN says:

      please help me ask em…….. Most people just won’t take a long hard critical look of things
      B4 praising the formation…… Same dolls on the pitch in different angles……does it make a difference?

  10. Fatboy Gooney says:

    Our main problem is Mentality and that is what needs to be fixed first.
    If this was a myth then Giant killings would never have existed.?

  11. twig says:

    Xhaka will start as we all know

  12. Kedar Damle says:

    Mustafi Koscielny Holding

    Bellerin Ramsey Xhaka Ozil Ox



  13. clam says:


    Stay packed in defence and counter-attack with the great pace.

  14. Franko says:

    For me, I have 2 good formation that woould make us very solid. Which one do you prefer?




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