Arsene Wenger will field a side of both youth and experience against Chelsea in Tuesday night’s Capital One Cup fixture, with some first team stars likely to start such as Monreal, Vermaelen, Bendtner and Rosicky alongside a few starlets.
The Gunners boss has revealed he will find a place for a number of first team regulars who have struggled for game time recently, while the big star names are expected to be rested for the knock-out Cup tie at Emirates Stadium.
The Frenchman told Sky Sports:
The team will be a mixture, with some players who are at the moment not getting the games they need and deserve, and also one or two young players.
I have to get that mixture right and I will leave myself until tomorrow to decide how I do that.
So let’s dive into the lineup predictions. In goal we can expect to see Fabianski handed the opportunity to impress between the sticks. In defence the most likely scenario appears to be Monreal, Jenkinson, Vermaelen and either Mertesacker or Koscielny alongside him.
Wenger confirmed that Flamini and Arteta will be unavailable while youngster Isaac Hayden looks set to start again after his positive first team bow against WBA in the last round. The 18-year-old can play in defence too, so he could get a run at the back, however it appears Wenger sees him more as a defensive minded midfielder.
Jack Wilshere could be offered a starting role in his favoured central midfield position, but that remains up in the air. Wenger’s comments in the team news suggests he may opt to start the 21-year-old. Tomas Rosicky is likely to feature after not being involved in the Palace game while Gnabry’s involvement is down to whether he recovers from his ankle knock, while Ryo Miyaichi looks a certain starter on one of the wings. Up front Olivier Giroud will be rested with Nicklas Bendtner almost certain to start.
Jenkinson Mertesacker Vermaelen (c) Monreal
There will be an opportunity for some of the other youth stars to be involved in some capacity, however Eisfeld and Zelalem are injured, while Frimpong seems unlikely to feature after Wenger’s team news comments.
Hector Bellerin and Kris Olsson seem likely candidates to play a role in the fixture while Chuba Akpom should also be in the squad.
What are your thoughts Gooners? Got any other suggestions? Comment below with your ideas..