Arsenal make the trip to west London to face Chelsea in Saturday’s Premier League game. The Gunners begun their campaign with a disappointing 2-0 defeat to Manchester City but they will be hoping to bounce back versus the Blues against whom they have not lost in six previous meetings.
Predicted Lineup (4-3-3):
Petr Cech was a surprise starter ahead of Bernd Leno for the season opener against the Citizens but he is now expected to start between the sticks for the London derby. Gunners boss Unai Emery confirmed the veteran’s inclusion during the pre-match press-conference.
In defence, Emery is unlikely to tinker with the central defensive combination of Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos but there is expected to be an enforced change in the full-back positions. Hector Bellerin is certain to start at right-back for the Gunners but Nacho Monreal could slot into the other side of the central defence with Ainsley Maitland-Niles sidelined with a leg fracture for a couple of months.
In the midfield, Mateo Guendouzi may have done enough in the season opener to earn his spot and the same could not be said of Granit Xhaka, who was guilty of losing possession in the wrong end of the pitch. Lucas Torreira could be handed his maiden start in the derby with Aaron Ramsey making up the third midfield spot in an advanced position than the duo.
Further forward, Emery may consider benching Henrikh Mkhitaryan from the starting lineup in order to compensate for Alexandre Lacazette’s inclusion. In this case, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil should take up the left and right positions respectively with the Frenchman leading the line for the first occasion under Emery.
Predicted Lineup (4-3-3): Petr Cech, Hector Bellerin, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Shkodran Mustafi, Nacho Monreal, Mateo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette