Arsenal are expected to have a pretty routine win when they host Bulgarian Champions Ludogorets in the midweek further cementing their position at the top of the table.
Coming from a strange win against Swansea City, which saw both the sides paying heavily for being hesitant at the back, Arsenal fans will expect a more organised display at the back in their Champions League match. Currently, at the top of the table, the Gunners have only been seriously challenged when they visited PSG. FC Basel has been comparatively a smooth win.
With their striker Theo Walcott in a hot form, Wenger’s side are expected breeze past Ludogorets, who come visit Emirates at a back of 3-1 away win against OFK Pirin. With tricky games like Middleborough over the weekend, Wenger might look to give rest to its key players or less playing time to keep them fit.
T4O’s predicted lineup for Arsenal against Ludogorets
The duo of Mustafi and Koscielny should be starting and they will be flanked by Monreal and Bellerin. Though Wenger has been known to use young players often at games, which are presumed to be an easy win, he is unlikely to start with Rob Holding at the heart of the defence. Monreal should start considering that Arsenal has seen a lack of cover on that left flank from young Iwobi. Monreal’s experience would help.
Besides, a trend of introducing Kieran Gibbs after bolstering the defensive midfield with Coquelin or Elneny, when the team is winning, could be seen in the last few games. Hence, a similar approach is expected.
Apart from that, Arsenal’s ever reliable David Ospina will guard the post, who is making a name for a Champions League specialist goalie.
Arsenal have a plethora of quality players in the midfield with the likes of Cazorla, Ozil, Xhaka, Coquelin, Chamberlain, Elneny, Iwobi and Walcott all fit. Wenger should start with the normal pair of Cazorla and Xhaka in the middle giving space to Ozil to operate with Iwobi and Walcott at the wings.
With Xhaka’s red card at the weekend, which will see him out for three matches, Wenger might opt to rest Coquelin and Elneny for the weekend game, bringing them on for the last few minutes in the second half.
Wenger should go with a sole striker up front, which has been designated to Alexis Sanchez, who has done the work pretty well. With Giroud out injured, Arsene has an option in his new signing Lucas Perez. But Perez is yet to get the required game time to play at the Champions league level, although he might come on in the second half if the team is winning comfortable.