Xhaka and Giroud benched – Arsenal team and preview for Chelsea

The Swiss international Granit Xhaka will have to wait a little longer for his next start in the Premier League, even though many Arsenal fans and football pundits thought his very impressive performance away to Nottingham Forest in the EFL cup this week would have convinced Arsene Wenger to start his expensive summer transfer.

The Frenchman has instead decided to keep faith with the starting line up that did so well as the Gunners won 4-1 away to Hull City last weekend. So once again Alexis Sanchez will play through the middle with Iwobi and Walcott on the flanks and Ozil in the number 10 role.

Their chances of scoring have received a big boost with the news that John Terry has not recovered from his injury in time to make the Chelsea squad so hopefully the Arsenal forwards will have some fun with Luiz today. Cazorla keeps his place in the middle with Coquelin as the deep lying midfielder and he will have a busy day today with the likes of Costa, Hazard, Willian and Fabregas to deal with.

Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal
Coquelin, Cazorla
Walcott, Ozil, Iwobi

Subs: Gibbs, Lucas Perez, Giroud, Ospina, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Holding, Xhaka.

So Giroud is fit enough to make the bench and it will be interesting to see if Wenger turns to him or Lucas Perez if Arsenal need a goal. COYG!


Tags Cazorla Giroud


  1. Twig says:

    The lineup is not a surprise. Wenger rarely makes major changes to his lineup from game to game. Cazorla and Coquelin both earn their place in midfield, although I don’t know how they’ll stand up to Kante and Matic. I would have liked Perez to come in place of Iwobi though to give the lineup a bit more experience. Overall, I wouldn’t say I’m too confident about today’s game. If there’s any special tactic for this game, it is not very clear.

  2. Disturbance says:

    Arsene has lost his mind with this selection…

    1. tissiam says:

      you must feel like a right idiot:)

  3. Uzi Ozil says:

    Just As I predicted…

    Same line up against Hull. Hopefully the boys remain focus. Iwobi and Walcott will need to help the fullbacks.

    COYG. Win or draw please. Don’t lose This….

    Ozil need to perform for us today. Xhakaboom later in the game?

  4. Arsenal_Girl says:

    Hopefully it will be strong enough to win.

    At some point we will need to rest caz and Coquelin though as they have played a lot of football. We will miss Xhaka’s long range shooting and I thought we would have either perez or Giroud in there

    Anyway good luck boys
    Let’s beat Chelski

  5. Roe-hahn says:

    Expected lineup. Wenger does not change a winning formula.

    I would have started Xhaka though and moved Cazorla to Ozil’s position. Also would have started Perez and moved Sanchez to the wings.

  6. muffdiver says:

    If Alex an theo don’t track back we will be sacrificed.
    Kante and matic vs santi coq
    Alexia won’t sit as a forward

    As always I’m unhappy with line up but tryst the manager.

    Plz Lord let this be the day that we finally destroy the chavs…please

    1. Twig says:

      Walcott will track back, don’t worry

  7. Taiwo says:

    I still don’t know the rationale behind playing our best player (Sanchez) out of his best position when you put your 2 strikers on the bench. To me is like under utilising the young boy. Play him in the left wing and you will get the best out of him

  8. Fatboy Gooney says:

    Hahaha, What a joker! ?
    Close your eye’s and cover your ears,
    It’s about to get nasty! ?
    Wenger!.. Your a muppet! ?

    1. Fatboy Gooney says:

      Hey guys… That was reverse psychology ?
      what did you want me to say ?… ” we got this” lol
      and what.. jinx it up! ?

      I can’t believe my eye’s lol… Mo’s book has inspired mr wenger big time lol.?

  9. mohawk says:

    When Wenger was criticized for the strange lineup vs. PSG I predicted he would do it again a few times.

    Wenger loves to spite his critics by repeating his stupid decisions. Here we go again.

  10. Dennis says:

    Brilliant! Sanchez up front for me all day every day. I don’t like Cazorla/Coq, we already saw they can’t handle chelsea last year so why try them again? Unlike last year though, we have ammunition on the bench (xhaka/elneny/giroud or perez) that will be coming in as subs which chelsea doesn’t really have (fabregas?)

    So to unleash our super subs on them when their defence is weakened is a great strategy imo. We should keep a 0-0 first half and look forward to the super subs making the impact in the 2nd half.

  11. blugooner says:

    Rubbish! You change your players and formation based on the team you come up against. Xhaka should be starting, and Sanchez is not a striker. Is that Rocket science? You have two natural strikers on the bench. WTF!!! Chelsea is not Hull City.

  12. Ramterta says:

    maybe wenger has forgotten willian and hazard play for chelsea.
    Laughable lineup

    1. Lexynal says:

      You guys owe Wenger an apology.

      1. Jon Sawai says:

        Yup…BIG time…

  13. ras911 says:

    SANCHEZ!!!!!!!!!!!! Great finish by Sanchez and gift from Cahill

  14. Twig says:

    Your new central striker Arsenal fans!!!

  15. ras911 says:

    ANOTHER ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Twig says:

    Fantastic movement from WALCOTT. Boom!

  17. Tidan2 says:

    This is why you have to start Walcott against the big teams, he consistently delivers for those ones.

  18. Arsenal_Girl says:

    🙂 🙂 🙂

    Happy happy happy
    But keep the goals coming
    Let’s not get complacent


  19. Ronny331 says:

    This game has goals in it, Chelsea will score so we need to some more. Got to watch Monreal side can’t leave a player like willian free. Coyg.

  20. ras911 says:

    Noooo le Coqqqq

  21. Twig says:

    You guys got what you want. Granit Xhaka’s coming on!

  22. Tidan2 says:

    Disappointing because he was playing well again in this match, but isn’t it wonderful to have proper backup for once.

  23. ras911 says:


  24. Twig says:

    Chelsea just can’t handle our movement today

  25. Ronny331 says:

    I thought sanchez and ozil had killed it but beautiful goal!! Chelsea missing Terry? This is awesome!!!!!

  26. k says:

    Chelsea are abysmal ? So impressed with Walcott tho

  27. win_withstyle says:

    A good day to be a gooner.. Let us rape them. Today is our chance to kill them mentally and sack Conte.

  28. ras911 says:

    We can’t take the foot off the gas, we have to keep this up because it is still Chelsea afterall

  29. arsenal_canada says:

    And I said Cazorla should take ozils spot… God was I wrong.

    1. Tidan2 says:

      as was I

  30. RSH says:

    What is Walcott on? He’s good!?!?!

    1. Burton says:

      The Walcott whom we have been waiting for, the Walcott who deserves 140k a week is finally here. Congrats Theo….

      1. ritblitz says:

        it was wake up call for theo and ox….seeing wilshere go on loan…

  31. Arsenal_Girl says:

    Honestly I didn’t expect 3-0 @ half-time
    Awesome 🙂

    I’m glad Theo is playing well. He is quickly making up for last season. Hope he scores lots more. Cf is not his position as evidenced by last season.

    And Alex is a is making Cf position his own

  32. Ronny331 says:

    Confidence breads more confidence we are looking silky today! 🙂

  33. Ronny331 says:

    Can’t remember when I last heard the Emirates so loud, fantastic to hear! Loved xhaka clearing out Costa there 🙂

  34. Fatboy Gooney says:

    I just had a Wonderful dream…. It was amazing! ?
    I saw Wenger on the touch line shouting instructions to our player’s! ? The Man had tactics! ?
    Mate!… i saw Our team playing like the invincibles, the passing, the teamwork and effort was incredible ?
    And guess what?… We were beating Chelsea 3 Nil at Half-time…. Wow what a dream… I had to share it with you all.
    I’m gonna try and go back to sleep to see what happens in the second half. ?

  35. sayantan says:

    All the negative minded fans criticizing till a few mins back are in a foot in mouth situation

  36. NY_Gunner says:

    Let’s bring it home ladz….Finish em off.

    1. Fatboy Gooney says:

      Sshhh! ?

  37. tissiam says:

    i know the game is not over but what i can,t stand it,s the “haters”just before the kick off slamming wenger with”laughable line up,wenger has lost it blah blah blah”they don,t even have the decency/balls to admit when they get it wrong ,they might start posting again if we concede a goal,very sad.COYG!!

    1. sayantan says:

      Yeah can’t even be a little bit positive before a match begins , wonder what they do in real life

  38. Ronny331 says:

    He substitutions for both sides are going to be massive today two strong benches. Bet Wenger wishes elneny was on the bench now. I’m guessing moses Pedro and batshuai for Chelsea.

  39. Lexynal says:

    I guess some guys now accept Wenger knows what he is doing. He didn’t just suddenly forget Alexis was a winger.

  40. Ronny331 says:

    I’m drooling…… bellerins tackle, granite vision and long range balls, walcotts hunger!

  41. Lexynal says:

    Happy 20yrs Anniversary Wenger. AKB?

  42. NY_Gunner says:

    “Bleep, bleep, bleep, bleep, bleep, bleep…You Gunners…”

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