CONFIRMED: Arsenal starting line-up against Sunderland as Ozil starts

Here is how Arsenal shape up for the game with Sunderland this Saturday.

Arsenal fans are very excited to see the club’s record signing Mesut Ozil make an appearance in the match against Sunderland this afternoon, but they might be left sick to the stomach.

Because Ozil is!

It was revealed yesterday evening that Ozil missed the Friday training session after arriving at the London Colney training ground feeling under the weather.

He is expected to undergo a fitness test this morning to decide whether he is fit enough to feature today.

Per Mertesacker is however believed to be suffering much more than his German counterpart and former Werder Bremen team-mate with a similar problem.

He is expected to miss the tie entirely with his illness, leaving Arsenal short at the back at The Stadium of Light.

With that in mind it is looking more and more likely that Thomas Vermaelen will be rushed back into action from his persistent back problem to cover for the German. The Belgian returned to training this week and was already expected to feature in some shape or form against The Black Cats - even if it was from the bench.

However it now appears he could even be thrown in from the start should Mertesacker fail to recover in time.

Otherwise Bacary Sagna will likely move to central defence with Carl Jenkinson entering the fold at right back.

If the news that Per Mertesacker was out and Mesut Ozil was doubtful through sickness was not bad enough for Arsenal fans then a rumour currently doing the rounds on Twitter will not cheer you guys up one bit.

There is quite a stir on the social network site this morning that suggests that Spanish international and star creator Santi Cazorla will not play today after picking up an injury.

With Tomas Rosicky already out along with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain it would give Arsene Wenger a real selection headache - along with the sickness developed by Ozil on Friday.

But with speculation now behind us, here is the squad for Arsenal’s game with Sunderland this afternoon…

Starting XI: Szczesny, Jenkinson, Sagna, Koscielny, Gibbs, Flamini, Ramsey, Wilshere, Ozil, Walcott, Giroud

Sub: Fabianski, Vermaelen, Monreal, Frimpong, Ryo, Gnabry, Akpom

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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