Arsenal will look to get back to their winnings ways against Tottenham Hotspur, and they will, so here’s how they’ll line up to do so.
Arsenal‘s match against Leicester was a big-time frustration, while Tottenham’s win over Everton was the dullest game ever imagined. It was a tale of two matches, one with two teams playing for something, one with two teams playing for nothing.
That changes when the North London Derby is concerned. Tottenham and Arsenal will both be up for a fight and that should bring out the best in both teams. Which is just fine by me, because the best of Arsenal is far better than the best of Spurs.
The Gunners aren’t facing any added injury pressures. Everyone that was out is still out and no one looks like they’re going to return any time soon. Calum Chambers, Bernd Leno, Pablo Mari—all out for the season.
Mesut Ozil, meanwhile, is still MIA, though it’s unclear when or if he will be back.
Meanwhile, you’ve got guys like Lucas Torreira and Cedric Soares who are back to full health and available for selection.
The only other guy that won’t be there is poor Eddie Nketiah, who was shown red against Leicester before he could even take a touch of the ball.
This allows Mikel Arteta some decent flexibility, but he’ll also be wondering what changes he needs to make at all. Or what changes he can make, since his team has been clicking (at least in first halves) over the past handful of matches.
Expect him to stay with a 3-4-3 formation. It seems to be the way to get the most out of this defense while giving his attack enough support across the board. Plus, like Arsene Wenger before him, Arteta does not seem like the kind of guy who’s going to mess with something that isn’t broken. Though he will have some questions to address in this attack.
Let’s dig in, starting in goal.
With Bernd Leno out for the season, Emi Martinez is the default No. 1 keeper and that doesn’t need to worry us at all. Both of these guys are clearly elite.
Let’s talk centerbacks next.