The Gunners head into Tuesday night’s Champions League Qualifier Second Leg with a comfortable 3-0 lead, however after a congested set of fixtures early on in the season Arsenal will have some tired legs.
Jack Wilshere was rested for the start of the weekend’s win over Fulham, coming on for 20 minutes to help sure up the midfield and give Tomas Rosicky a breather but will return to the lineup.
Aaron Ramsey has worked tirelessly over the past couple of weeks earning a host of plaudits for his man of the match performances, but will once again will most likely be called upon (he’s fit as anything anyway).
Up front not too much will change, Lukas Podolski will most likely have earned a start on the left and allow Santi Cazorla to operate through the middle. Rosicky can then take a break with one eye on next weekend’s North London Derby.
Arsene Wenger revealed Koscileny is fit however is uncertain whether he will start, while Wilshere will almost certainly get the nod:
Koscielny is fit and in the squad but I’ve not decided if I will start him or not.
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It’ll be stability in the team. Maybe one or two who are a bit injured, but 95 per cent of the team who played at Fulham will play. Jack Wilshere will play.
If Koscielny does start it will allow Sagna to slot in on the right hand side relegating Jenkinson to the bench who had a mixed outing at Craven Cottage. Kieran Gibbs could also be afforded a rest with Nacho Monreal yet to start a game this season, the Spanish international is hardly a down-grade so Wenger would be wise to give Gibbs a breather to allow the more attacking-minded left back to rest up for the Spurs match.
Wenger’s Probable Lineup:
Jenkinson Sagna Mertesacker (c) Gibbs
My Preferred Lineup:
Sagna Koscielny Mertesacker (c) Monreal
What are your thoughts Gooners?? Against Fulham I called for Podolski’s inclusion and he certainly paid dividends. The German international should again start allow Cazorla to operate through the middle. Rosicky needs a breather, as does Kieran Gibbs but it seems Wenger has been adamant to maintain starting with the Englishman rather than opting to use Monreal.
If Koscielny is fit and able to play then he should start. It will help get the momentum rolling again for the Frenchman after missing out on the weekend and get him ready for the Derby this weekend. Sagna can be on the right and if the game goes well substitute on Jenkinson or even the youngster Hector Bellerin for some experience. Similarly for Walcott, Gnabry could do with a run out and give him the opportunity to run at the leaky Fenerbahce defence.
Comment below with your thoughts and lineups of your own!