Unai Emery’s Arsenal team had been subject to a lot of criticism following their drab and frustrating 1-1 draw against mid-table strugglers Manchester United. Although they were able to secure three points against Bournemouth the following weekend, even that slender victory wouldn’t have come off as convincing to the home fans. With a visit to Bramall Lane on the cards for the Gunners, they will be looking to send a statement of intent to the rest of the league about their Top 4 aspirations.
Sheffield United have unquestionably been one of the surprise packages of the season so far. The sheer fluidity and composure they show on the ball as a unit deserves a lot of respect and underestimating Chris Wilder’s men can be a terrible idea. They’ve only lost one of the last three league fixtures and will be looking to pull off a surprise victory when the Gunners come to visit on Monday night.
4-3-3 Arsenal Predicted Lineup Vs Sheffield United
Team News: Alexandre Lacazette has returned from injury ahead of schedule although he remains a doubt to participate in the tie from the start. Another short-term absentee is Spanish full-back Hector Bellerin who is still gradually recovering from a knee problem he picked up last season. The only serious injury concern that Emery currently has is Reiss Nelson, who has been ruled out at least until the end of November.
Sokratis is usually reliable at the back, and his partnership with Brazilian star David Luiz is slowly beginning to pay dividends for the Gunners. The duo has managed to nullify the opposition on two separate occasions in the league this season. Considering that their last game also showcased a clean slate, expect the defensive pairing to continue in front of Bernd Leno’s goal. However, Rob Holding’s excellent performances in the Cup games ever since he returned from his long-term injury layoff mean that Luiz and Sokratis need to perform or get replaced by the English star.
Despite Hector Bellerin’s long-awaited return from injury, rushing him back into the thick of the Premier League could turn out to be a massive mistake. This means that Calum Chambers is expected to continue in the right-back role where he seems to be excelling. Sead Kolasinac’s barraging runs forward has been a feature of Unai Emery’s system. The pace and drive he offers help move the team in either direction quickly. While new signing Kieran Tierney is fit and raring to go, we believe Emery will save him for Thursday’s Europa League game.
Although the timely acquisition of Dani Ceballos has done wonders for Emery’s side so far this campaign, we expect him to start the game against Sheffield United on the bench. Lucas Torreira could make his return to the Arsenal side this week in what is essentially a must-win game for the Gunners. He will be partnered in midfield by their French Golden Boy award nominee Matteo Guendouzi. The youngster has been a revelation since joining from Lorient.
As someone able to contribute well in both the defensive and offensive phases of play, the prodigious midfield player has been one of the Gunners’ best players this season. Now that Granit Xhaka has been named club captain, it could mean that he doesn’t miss out on too much league action from here on in. Despite his tendency to make individual errors, the Arsenal skipper remains a vital cog in Unai Emery’s midfield setup.
One of the only players who’s showed signs of consistency from the start of the campaign is Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The former Borussia Dortmund man has been at the heart of everything good that has come out of the Arsenal camp and his goals against Manchester United and Aston Villa were more than crucial as well. His hold-up play has been much better this year, and he’s getting the love he deserves from the Arsenal faithful.
To support the man in-form, Emery could deploy what has apparently turned into his preferred attacking duo – Nicolas Pepe and Bukayo Saka. Although the big-money signing from Lille is yet to really announce himself to the Premier League, Bukayo Saka has burst onto the scene in a somewhat surprising manner. His inclusions in the starting lineups weren’t expected, but he took whatever opportunity he was given by the scruff of the neck. At least for as long as Lacazette isn’t fully match fit, Saka is the first-choice left-winger.
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