Aside from Alex Lacazette, Arsenal have a clean bill of health as they get ready to face Frankfurt in their opening Europa League game of the season.
The Frenchman has been told to rest the ankle he injured in pre-season until October but is expected to be back in action by the time Premier League action resumes post-Interlull against Sheffield United.
Elsewhere, the latest bulletin from the medical team confirms that full-backs Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin and centre-back Dinos Mavropanos are back in full training.
The Greek is slightly ahead of the other two having played 67 minutes for the under-23s in last week’s win over Leicester.
It is expected that Bellerin and Tierney will also get game time with the youngsters in Premier League 2 before being considered for first team action. That could mean inclusion in the squad to face Wolves on Friday night or a home game with Liverpool on 28 September. We look forward to seeing them both in action soon.
Arsenal face Frankfurt, beaten semi-finalists last year, at 5.55pm on Thursday. After Sunday’s disappointing draw at Watford, all eyes will be on Unai Emery’s team selection. Will he play a strong team or hand responsibility for this tricky game to the youngsters. We’ll see…
Would like to see something like
Mustafi Holding Chambers Kolasinac
Nelson Pepe Martinelli
The Dungeon (Holding Chambers) on the pitch!
Can’t do worse than against Watford 2nd half, surely.
Hopefully they can lock a couple Frankfurt strikers up in the dungeon on Thursday. If they can get a clean sheet, surely at least one of them earns a run in EPL games too.
Slow clap that turns into a thundering applause for that
He must pick a strong team for this game. EF are a decent side and must be taken seriously. We can play the stiffs against the weaker teams. We need to take 3 points here.
UE started our presumably best 11 against Watford. Don’t see why he shouldn’t give some of the outcasts some chances here. Europe League should only be prioritised in the final stages, getting top 4 is much more important and we should be cautious to risk any injuries now.
completely agree. It would be bonkers to think we can reach CL via EL. It’s a tournament. And that means a bad performance in k.o. stage probably results in “Goodbye CL”.
And we all know that this team is indeed capable of performing bad currently….
We are playing a team that almost eliminated Chelsea last season. If we lose six points against them and draw one or two games against other teams, we may very well be eliminated at group stage.
Dead right. We can’t afford to close the door on this route to the Champions’ League. We got to the final last year and had we actually turned up we would probably be playing tonight.
After Sunday’s debacle Emery is under massive pressure. Another poor performance and defeat would ramp up the pressure on him. So my guess is that he’ll play a strong side.
He probably will. Let’s just hope it’s not too costly.
The line up Spanish Gooner suggested actually isn’t that far from senior. Playing a strong side cannot include the guys that fucked up on Sunday. Thus, maybe AML for Mustafi. And let’s give Martinelli a go with PEA as backup. You want Ozil instead of Nelson? Xhaka instead of Torreira? Well, I’m okay with picking Guendouzi, but maybe just rest him on the bench. Let’s give these guys the opportunity for starting place, who did not have them yet. What would we learn from picking the exact line up we played on Sunday? We already know that they are not… Read more »
Oh well, what a shame
We really don’t need 3 points, the other games are far more winnable meaning at very worst we finish 2nd. No way should we go gung ho and risk Auba when we’ve got noone else.
Totally agree with Fat. We cannot afford neglecting Europa League. Do people expect this team to achieve top four in the league with what they did last year? Fans seem to have forgotten following results in the last six games of the previous season:
Everton- Arsenal 1-0
Crystal Palace – Arsenal 3-2
Wolve – Arsenal 3-1
Leicester – Arsenal 3-0
The chances of winning EL are slim and unfortune can easily wipe us out. EL causes fatigue and make us more vulnerable to injuries which we cannot afford if we want to finish 3rd or 4th. EL on the other hand gives the youngsters a great possibility to gain much needed experience and especially in the group stage they should be good enough to secure advancement, if not we’ll have one less competition to worry about. However if we get to the quarter or semis we should play a better team if our PL position allow us. It’s time for… Read more »
If your chances of winning EL are not big then your chances of achieving top four are very small as well. Chelsea and Man U needed to win EL and actually won it.
The EL run can be trashed in one game, PL can’t. All it takes is a good opposition and some suspensions and injuries on key players and the knock-outs would be just that. Top 4 won’t be easy, but we should be able to compete with Man utd, Chelsea and Sp*rs. Winning EL would of course be awesome, but cup is cup.
We were still only a point off 4th though. There`s not much gap between us chelsea spurs and united this year. And we arguably have the better squad this season, the league should be our primary focus.
But we should have finished third easily with easy games and unexpected gifts.
Chelsea is not as weak as we think. Tammy Abraham has been scoring goals for fun. We shouldn’t compare him to Auba. We should compare him to Pépé (the new weapon to the new weapon) and if you do that Chelsea is the winner.
We need to address our league form before worrying about Europe.
Looking at is as simply as avoiding early fatigue, we shouldn’t shoulder too much on the current starting 11 so soon. The team that Spanish suggests isn’t that weak. Perhaps Ozil instead of Ceballos (I think I prefer him in the league) and a bench that includes Aubameyang etc and we just do our best. I don’t necessarily think it’s a given that this team is incapable of winning but I think it’s about empowering them to do their best in this game of this competition while the other players do theirs in the League.
Would play nelson on the left, Pepe on the right and Martinelli as number 9. Pepe should play is his favorite position and start to deliver there imo. Apart from that I like that team. Not sure if I’d risk Ceballos or rather go with someone like Smith-Rowe but there a reasons to play Ceballos, too.
I guess Mustafi used to play some RB in germany right? Maybe he might actually work there he’s not slow, just reading the game and awareness lacking. AMN could also be worth another go with Hector getting close. Otherwise it is the team I would pick for sure. I’d like to see that midfield trio in the EPL too.
why not have Mustafi at RB for 90 mins and give Ainsley 30 min at CM.
Mustafi played at right back for Germany when they won the World Cup. Played right back for us some, better than Chambers, I thought. Good passing from the back, though doesn’t get up into the attack as much as a modern fullback. All this, of course, assumes no stupid mistakes. Or, I guess, no more than anyone else.
with a bench of Okonkwo, Medley, Bola, Ozil, ESR, Saka, TJJ
I would love to see Bola get some minutes. I hope he can develop to be solid backup to / competition for Tierney
This is the perfect match to introduce both of our first choice fullbacks. They are back in training, so quicker they approach match fitness the better. It could be a huge boost since so much of player involvement involves our fullbacks.
Seems risky to start them right away, just after their serious injuries, at least both of them. However getting them quickly back in fitness would be great, but as you say they’ll be important in our team so we’ll need them fresh for the whole campaign.
I guess it’s a little too early for that, but I’d like it.
Forest next week far better in my opinion.
They haven’t even played in the U23s as is customary for players coming back from injury. Give it time.
I’ve lowered my pants and ready for the inevitable away day spanking
Really want to see Chambers come in and do well, both in this game and after. He no doubt has his limitations but in my eyes he offers to important improvements on what we’ve seen so far in that: 1) He is calm on the ball (especially having had a year’s worth of PL experience playing in midfield) 2) He is calm in defense and doesn’t dive in rashly or stick legs out. He definitely deserves his chance on the basis that he did well last year and in pre-season and that we’ve seen numerous bad examples of defensive mistakes… Read more »
Gotta take it slow with Holding, but I hope towards the end of this year those two can establish themselves in the heart of defense. If Chambers performs well here I’d like to see Luiz and Chambers at the back against the Villans.
Why does everyone talk about Chambers like he is bad? He got destroyed by Montero but other than that he’s seemed solid enough.
Now he’s back from loan I consider his development phase complete, and he’s put in the best performance of any of our CBs this season. No idea why he got dropped after that.
Wondering the same thing. Chambers should be given a chance too. Not even Sokratis is untouchable to me.
When memes transcend reality…hes probably our most slept on player at the moment. Its readily forgotten that he was hands down our best defender the second half of the 17/18 season, at a time when Holding was in dreadful form (also just never discussed) and Koscielnys game time was being managed due to his achilles. I made a point of watching him at Fulham last season and two things about him are very obvious. Hes a very good reader of the game and has a knack for well timed challenges, and hes very accomplished on the ball. Qualities that any… Read more »
I don’t know if you are right, but a very useful post to think about. I thought Chambers was always lacking as a fullback and perhaps that is where my opinion was formed. I saw him only a couple of times for Fulham, and he was in the midfield, seemed to play well–but the team was constantly overrun.
The biggest problem with this club is that there is no accountability. There are no repercussions for poor performances and repeated boneheaded errors. At a better team, Sokratis or Luiz would be dropped and Chambers will get a run of games. But this is arsenal football club, so we’re debating if Chambers should start
Great to see our team soon being all fresh, knock on the wood. We’ll need our best now. Let’s hope for some tactical work too.
I think what will be interesting is who he has on the bench as much as who he starts. Not sure we ‘have’ to win this match – we can still come through the group if we lose it. FOr who plays and when I’ll simply hope its with a view for getting mins into legs (ie 60mins or 20mins) for fitness for the PL rather than risking players like Auba and Ceballos who will prove crucial to winning games in PL. So when I see the team I’m hoping to be able to say to myself “ah, so-and-so is… Read more »
Structure and game plan are secret! Even from the players it seems!
Isn’t that what Emery is telling Laca in the picture? “Trust me Alex, I will tell you the tactics in the moment and we will have a good ebenning.”
I see in Mirror some players are complaining about repetitive training sessions. That to me is for one of two reasons. 1, Emery believes the players don’t get what he wants and will repeat till they do or 2 Emery has a small drill book with a limited session plans. Personally I think it’s 1 and we are beginning to see the start of player power to edge Emery out.
I think both options are highly likely!
Ozil should start, he needs to build match fitness too
Özil was good in the first half. Did not misplaced a single pass. Created two very good scoring chances, one which resulted in the second goal. But he is not yet up to speed in terms of match fitness. So yes play him.
Ozil did some good passing in the first half (loved the ball to Pepe) but apart from that he’s like taking to the field with only 10 men. He has no pressing, no tracking back and absolutely no defensive intensity in the slightest and prone to a wander. It’s a tough away game which he famously doesn’t turn up for (even in Germany) but of course -we don’t have to win. So I can see the temptation of playing him because well…it kinda doesn’t matter. But for the sake of the young players getting a chance it would be good… Read more »
Why don’t we have to win this one? Is this some new rule from UEFA?
I would give Ozil some time to build match fitness.
Small steps but we need to make tangible improvements. 1) Work out a more nuanced approach to playing ut the back. Auba is not the best asset in competing for high balls or retaining and protecting the ball in absence of Lacazette. Thereby we need to find a way to circumvent the first press. Station players like Pepe and Kolasinac (both physically strong and with tidy feet) just before the half way line to receive like Sagna did. 2) Midfield diamond disassociates us. The front press was uncoordinated with the midfield and the back. Or a Granit issue as some… Read more »
In terms of formation, I think we are either a 4-3-3 or a 3-4-1-2 Particularly in terms of the weakness at Cback (minus Mustafi) still, and the fullbacks in hand, we are in some ways better in a 3 at the back. There should be bias to whether we play Ozil or not depending on the structure we can adopt to support him and take into account he will never be 100% strong on the defensive side of things (not that he was the worse performer against Watford mind you) Thereby 4-3-3 : ………………………….Auba…………………………….. Nelson…………………………………………………Pepe …….Cebellos/willock………..Guendouzi/Torreira……. ………………………….Granit……………………………. Kolasinac……………………………………………….AMN ………………Holding…………Sokratis…………………. ………………………….Leno………………………………… Read more »
Can’t be arsed to read all of that but it probably makes more sense than employing Emery does at the moment!
Just wanted to ask who will be our captain tonight ? Or shall we roll the dice and guess?
Ah! The pick a skipper lottery!