Having started their season in the Premier League on a lowly note, Arsenal are looking to find their lost footing back in the tournament gradually, having won their last match against Bournemouth in what was a dominant display of possessional and attacking football. They will look to take that form with them when they go into their next match against German side FC Koln at the Emirates Stadium this week in their first game of the Europa League this season.
The Gunners were unable to grab a place in the top four of the Premier League, making it their first time since 1998 to do so. However, the North Londoners will be looking to get the tournament underway with a win in their very first match against FC Koln, who are currently not playing as per their potential in the German Bundesliga.
Koln have lost their last three matches in the German Bundesliga against FC Augsburg, Hamburg SV and Borussia Monchengladbach so far, which might be a good news for Arsenal, as they go into their first Europa League match against a side who are not in the best of states as far as the results are concerned. However, the Gunners will be cautious in their approach and will hope that they can get three points from their contest.
Arsenal are expected to start with their usual 3-4-3 formation that they have been implementing since the start of the season. They are expected to start with Nacho Monreal, Per Mertesacker, and Rob Holding ringing in the changes from the last match against Bournemouth, which did not let any opposition player getting past them and score a goal. It will be crucial for them to keep their opponents as quiet as possible and come out on top of them.
The four man midfield is expected to start the athletic full back Sead Kolasinac on the left flank while the young Spaniard Hector Bellerin on the right one, with the Welsh playmaker Aaron Ramsey aptly supported by the Swiss enforcer Granit Xhaka in the middle of the pitch. The Gunners will hope that they will be able to contain the opposition as well as ensure the delivery of quality balls to help the attackers.
The attack might be spearheaded by Frenchman Olivier Giroud, supported by Danny Welbeck and Alexis Sanchez on his either side. The English attacker is likely to be charged up after scoring a brace in his side’s win against Bournemouth in their last match in the Premier League, while Giroud will get his chance from the start for the first time this season
Ospina, Monreal, Koscielny, Mustafi, Kolasinac, Xhaka, Ramsey, Bellerin, Welbeck, Sanchez, Giroud