Arsenal will be buzzing when they welcome Watford to the Emirates in the midweek Matchday 23. The Gunners are fresh off a resounding 5-0 win over Southampton. The Saints beat Liverpool in their preceding match and made it to the finals of the EFL Cup making it look like a cracker of a match in the FA Cup 4th round between them and Arsenal was approaching. But it was an anti-climax of a different order altogether as a Theo Walcott hat-trick and a Danny Welbeck brace demolished the EFL Cup finalists.
Arsenal will now turn their attention to the league where they will be looking to retain their 2nd place and try and get to such a position that will give them a chance to capitalise on Chelsea’s slip-ups, if and when they come. And co-incidentally, with the Blues scheduled to visit Anfield on the same day, a Liverpool win or a draw cannot be ruled out. The Premier League needs more than one team to be a part of the title race and many will be hoping that Liverpool can cause an upset like Spurs did a few weeks back.
Wenger will have to make sure the players don’t get too cocky and his instructions will also have to be properly communicated with the Frenchman serving the 2nd of his 4-match touchline suspension.
PREDICTED ARSENAL XI VS WATFORD (4-2-3-1)
Petr Cech will be in goal as usual and after a rest and will be raring to chalk-up another clean sheet. The Spanish international Bellerin is expected to take his place at right back replacing Gabriel. The centre-half pair will be Laurent Koscielny and Shkodran Mustafi- one of the most successful duos in the Premier League this season. Arsenal haven’t lost a game whenever Mustafi has started. Nacho Monreal has again won back Wenger’s confidence and is expected to start ahead of Gibbs at left-back.
Granit Xhaka’s already brittle reputation got another hit as a nonsensical foul got him his marching orders and a subsequent 4-game ban. He has been criticised roundly by both the fans and the manager and needs to get things right in the future. Arsenal will most likely go for Ramsey and Chamberlain in midfield with doubts regarding Coquelin’s fitness. It will be an adventurous move by Wenger if he indeed chooses this pairing. Ozil will be in the No.10 position.
Sanchez will most likely be on the left flank while Iwobi will start on the right and will probably make way for Walcott later on. Olivier Giroud will be starting up top.
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