Saturday, December 3, 2022

Mesut Ozil Misses Out, Pepe To Start | Predicted 4-3-3 Arsenal Lineup Vs Southampton

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Jack O’Brien
A 22 y/o football nerd seeking my way into football writing. I love Irish football and also the Premier League. A huge Arsenal fan! Aside from writing, I like to spend my time fishing and drinking beer.

Arsenal will look to bounce back to winning form when they travel to St. Mary’s to face Southampton on Wednesday. The Gunners have restarted their 2019/20 Premier League campaign with two back to back defeats against Manchester City and Brighton & Hove Albion and a win this midweek could be essential as they look to remain in the race to finish in the top five this season.

Predicted Arsenal Lineup Vs Southampton

Defence

Mikel Arteta has very few options in the defensive department thanks to a host of injuries to star players. Sokratis, Pablo Mari, Cedric Soares and Calum Chambers are facing spells on the sidelines while David Luiz will be serving the last of his two-match suspension following a dreadful red card against Manchester City.

It means Rob Holding and Shkodran Mustafi are the only options for Arsenal at centre-back. They weren’t exactly impressive against Brighton and must improve their performance if the Gunners are to seal all three points in this fixture.

Arteta does have options at left-back, with Kieran Tierney likely to replace Sead Kolasinac after giving him a breather in the last game. Hector Bellerin, meanwhile, is a guaranteed starter on the opposite flank although Ainsley Maitland-Niles is also an option.

And finally, Emiliano Martinez is poised to receive his first Premier League start in years after Bernd Leno picked up a serious injury against Brighton. It remains unknown as to when exactly the German will be back fit.

Predicted Arsenal Lineup Vs Southampton - Emi Martinez is ready to step in
BOURNEMOUTH, ENGLAND – JANUARY 27: Emiliano Martinez of Arsenal in action during the FA Cup Fourth Round match between AFC Bournemouth and Arsenal at Vitality Stadium on January 27, 2020 in Bournemouth, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Midfield

Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira are once again likely to miss out on this fixture due to their injury. That means Arteta has no option but to continue with the combination of Matteo Guendouzi and Dani Ceballos in central midfield. They could receive additional support from Bukayo Saka in what is likely going to be a 4-3-3 formation.

The young Englishman is set to feature on the left flank, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang likely to move into a more central role. As for other options, both Joe Willock and Mesut Ozil are expected to start on the bench.

Attack

Alexandre Lacazette managed to impress in the last game with his excellent combination play with Aubameyang. These two should once again play a key role as Arsenal look to breach Southampton’s sturdy defence.

They are set to receive additional support from Nicolas Pepe, who scored a wondergoal in the last game. However, the Ivorian simply needs to get involved more to make a difference indeed.

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