There will be everything for the taking as the two former champions of the Premier League meet each other in their opening game of the 2017/18 season on Friday. Arsenal will be taking on Leicester City in a battle, which has the promise to become one of the most exciting ones given the fact that both the teams will look to win it. Early wins will be crucial for every team this season, given the unpredictable nature of the competition and both the Gunners and the Foxes are no stranger to that.
Both the teams consist of a number of players, who can turn the game on its head on their day. The following key battles might be the ones that can decide the fate of the match to be played at the Emirates Stadium-
Harry Maguire vs Alexandre Lacazette-
Both the players will be playing for the first time against each other in their very first match in their respective club jerseys. Lacazette, with all his experience of playing in the French Ligue 1 and being hailed as one of the top strikers in Europe, is supposed to take the upper hand over the English defender, who was signed from Hull City by the Foxes this summer. However, the big and strong centre back is not going to give up without a fight and will use all his experience he has gained by playing in the top flight with the Tigers in the last term to keep the French marksman at bay.
Per Mertesacker vs Jamie Vardy-
As the Gunners will play in a 3-4-3 combination for their first match of the season, the onus will be one their influential captain and veteran defender Per Mertesacker to keep one of the most dangerous strikers in the Premier League, Jamie Vardy, from showing his predatory skills in front of the Arsenal goal and notch up a few for his team. The Englishman will also be looking to make it past the wily German, who is in his last season as an Arsenal player, and put the ball in the back of the net to win the match for his team.
Hector Bellerin vs Riyad Mahrez-
It is supposed to be one of the most exciting fights of the match, as the two most highly regarded players go up against each other in the midfield to dominate it and keep their respective teams in advantage. While the Spanish full back will be looking to keep a check on Mahrez, the Algerian will be hoping to show his prowess in getting past the defender and get the ball in the right place for his teammates to capitalise on.