After winning the North London bragging rights by beating Tottenham 3-1 last time out, Arsenal face another early test of their title credentials when they host Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.
The Gunners are flying high this season and are at the summit of the Premier League, winning seven out of their out games so far. Mikel Arteta’s side continued their stunning form with a 3-0 win over Bodo/Glimt in the Europa League on Thursday, taking control of Group A in the process.
Heading into the game with high spirits and confidence, Arteta and co. will certainly fancy their chances against a shaky Liverpool side.
Arsenal Team News
Mohamed Elneny and Emil Smith Rowe are the two long-term absentees for Arsenal and they will remain out until after the World Cup.
Oleksandr Zinchenko was not part of the Gunners’ squad against Bodo/Glimt in the Europa League and didn’t train earlier this week having limped away from the Emirates Stadium after beating Spurs. So, the Ukrainian international remains a doubt for the Liverpool game.
Predicted Arsenal Lineup vs Liverpool (4-2-3-1)
Aaron Ramsdale has started every Premier League game so far this season and there is no looking past him in the Arsenal goal on Sunday.
Mikel Arteta is expected to stick to his 4-2-3-1 formation that has given Arsenal huge success this term. William Saliba will resume his centre-back partnership with Gabriel Magalhaes. The duo have generally kept things tight at the back thus far, but face a mighty challenge of stopping a terrific Liverpool side.
Takehiro Tomiyasu played at right-back against Bodo/Glimt but he will make way for Ben White on Sunday. If Oleksandr Zinchenko is not deemed fit enough to start, Kieran Tierney will continue at left-back and look to keep Mohamed Salah at bay.
A double pivot of Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka is expected to start at the heart of the Arsenal midfield. Partey and Xhaka work very well in tandem, offering defensive solidity while initiating attacks from deep. The duo will look to move the ball well and keep the game ticking off.
Martin Odegaard will look to pull the strings from his preferred no.10 role. The Arsenal skipper’s creativity, movement and vision could be key to unlocking the Liverpool door. Fabio Vieira will have to settle for a spot on the bench, regardless of his impressive display against Bodo/Glimt in the Europa League.
Gabriel Jesus has been superb since joining Arsenal from Man City in the summer, scoring five goals, but it is his pressing, physicality and tenacity that he brings to the table other than goals that make him such a special player. He will lead the attack, and if the Brazilian can disrupt the Liverpool backline and cause panic, it will be vital to the Gunners’ hopes of getting a result.
Flanking Jesus will be Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka, as the two wide attackers look to exploit Liverpool’s apparent vulnerabilities at the back.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.