With our clash against Bournemouth coming less than two days after the shock 4-0 defeat we witnessed at St Mary’s just down the coast, changes may be required. Injuries unfortunately mean Arsene Wenger has very few options though, and will be restricted in a number of areas.
There were several players who performed truly terribly against Southampton, and deserve to lose their places when we play host to Eddie Howe’s side. Below we surmise which players will be axed and which will keep their spots.
Here’s how we believe Arsenal will line up for our clash with Bournemouth:
GK) Petr Cech
Cech was certainly below par on boxing day, but to react by dropping him in favour of David Ospina would no doubt prove a colossal mistake.
RB) Hector Bellerin
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The same goes for Hector Bellerin, who while not at his best on Saturday, is far, far better than our other option at right back; Mathieu Debuchy.
LB) Nacho Monreal
Monreal is one player who could feasibly be rested with (hopefully) not too much of a problem. Kieran Gibbs has deservedly been dropped in favour of the Spaniard, but you’d argue he’s still perfectly capable of doing a job.
CB) Laurent Koscielny
Both Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker were absolutely shocking against Southampton, and the pair were unquestionably run ragged by Shane Long. You’d hope that it is only a blip for the Frenchman though, and he’ll be back to his best against Bournemouth.
CB) Gabriel Paulista
If one of the two centre-backs are to be dropped, it needs to to Mertesacker. Hopefully the German is rested and Gabriel Paulista gets a start, as the Brazilian has certainly shown he’s more than capable.
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