Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Trossard, Saka, Tomiyasu - Arsenal Starting XI Vs Manchester City

Arsenal welcome Manchester City to The Emirates on Wednesday for what is undoubtedly the biggest game of the Premier League season so far.

The Gunners currently hold a three-point lead over the reigning champions, although they do also have a game-in-hand on their opponents.

Mikel Arteta has primarily fielded an unchanged XI throughout the season so far, relying on the same 11 players where possible.

Despite this, the Spaniard will still have several difficult decisions to make, and here we predict the XI that he will select for the huge clash.

Goalkeeper

England international Aaron Ramsdale has started every one of Arsenal’s 21 league games so far this term and will continue in goal against City.

The ex-Bournemouth man has kept nine clean sheets so far this season in the Premier League, but will be tasked with keeping the likes of Erling Haaland and Phil Foden at bay.

Defenders

Arteta has used Ben White as a makeshift right-back for the majority of this season, and the Englishman looks set to continue in his new role. Takehiro Tomiyasu has acted as White’s deputy so far this term, and will likely once again be on the bench for the visit of City.

 

In the middle, Arteta looks set to continue with his first choice centre-back pairing of Gabriel and William Saliba. The pair have started every one of Arsenal’s league games so far this term, keeping the likes of Rob Holding out of the side and forcing White out to the right side of defence.

Left-back is arguably the position that Arteta has rotated most often this term, with Oleksandr Zinchenko and Kieran Tierney both pushing to be first choice. The former is most likely to start against his former club, with the Scot among the substitutes.

Midfield

Arteta looks set to once again name his usual midfield pairing of Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey. The pair have both been in sensational form this season, helping propel The Gunners to the top of the table. Arsenal were looking to recruit a midfielder in January and ultimately landed former Chelsea man Jorginho in a cut-price deal, but the Italian is likely to be named among the substitutes before likely being involved later on in the game.

 

In the advanced midfield role, club captain Martin Odegaard is set to continue and will be relied upon to spearhead the hosts’ creativity. The ex-Real Madrid star has already scored eight goals and provided six assists in the Premier League this term, and he could prove crucial at The Emirates on Wednesday.

Forwards

Up front, Bukayo Saka is in line to once again start on the right of Arsenal’s attack. The England international has arguably been The Gunners’ best player so far this term, scoring seven goals and providing eight assists.

Eddie Nketiah will lead the line once again in the absence of Gabriel Jesus. The English striker has deputised well for his Brazilian teammate, scoring six goals in his last nine matches across all competitions.

On the left, Leandro Trossard could be handed his first league start for Arsenal after scoring against Brentford on Saturday. Gabriel Martinelli has been an ever present in the Arsenal side so far this season, starting all 21 of their league games, but the Brazil international has been criticised for his form of late and Belgium international Trossard could therefore be given the nod.

Predicted XI: Ramsdale; White, Gabriel, Saliba, Zinchenko; Partey, Odegaard, Xhaka; Saka, Nketiah, Trossard

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