Thursday, 5 April 2018

4-2-3-1: Lacazette or Welbeck up front? My Arsenal XI to face CSKA

Arsenal welcome CSKA Moscow to the Emirates this evening for the first leg of our Europa League quarter-final tie. Here is the team I would like to see Arsene Wenger select….

Goalkeeper: Ospina
Cech is available after missing the Stoke game with a groin injury but I think Ospina deserves to keep his place in goal as he’s been first choice throughout the Europa League.

Defence: Bellerin, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal
Koscielny was rightly rested at the weekend so he’ll be fresh to return in defence. Chambers did well against Stoke but he’ll still be the man to drop out with Mustafi keeping his place.
Bellerin will obviously start at right-back once again while Monreal should be given the nod ahead of Kolasinac at left-back so it will be our first choice back four on show tonight.

Midfield: Xhaka, Ramsey, Wilshere
Xhaka was given a rare rest against Stoke so he’ll get a recall tonight. I’m not his biggest fan but I do think we missed him at the weekend as there was nobody to build possession from deep.
Elneny will be the man to make way as Ramsey will obviously keep his place. It will be interesting to see how Wenger sets the midfield up but I’d go with Rambo alongside Xhaka in a box-to-box role.
Wilshere would be my final pick in midfield and he’d start in a slightly more advanced position to Xhaka and Ramsey with Jack able to link-up with our forwards in the final third.

Attack: Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Lacazette
Aubameyang bagged a brace against Stoke but unfortunately he’s unavailable in Europe so Wenger has a decision to make as to who starts up front.
Welbeck started both legs against AC Milan while Lacazette was injured but the Frenchman made his return with a goal off the bench at the weekend and he’s been declared fit to start. If that’s the case, then it’s a no brainer for me. Lacazette is the clear choice over Welbeck.
Mkhitaryan is due a recall after being rested at the weekend so he’ll come in to join Ozil in attack and we’ll need those two on-song to hopefully give ourselves a healthy lead going in to the second leg.
This is the team I hope we see:

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