Arsene Wenger couldn’t have asked for more from his team at the start of this season, with the Gunners sitting top of the Premier League with a two point cushion and starting the Champions League in perfect fashion.
Wenger has a couple of selection dilemmas ahead of this weekend because Tomas Rosicky was superb on his return to first team action against Napoli and Mikel Arteta looked as though he’s never been out of the side this campaign.
Here is the side he may go with ahead of the weekend.
GK – Wojciech Szczesny
The Polish goalkeeper continues to offer Arsenal a very solid option in goal. He’s working well with the back four in front of him and his distribution seems to be better than ever at the moment, whether he’s feeding the defence or setting up counter attacks.
RB – Carl Jenkinson
With Bacary Sagna ruled out with a hamstring problem for the next three weeks, there's a chance for Carl Jenkinson to slot in at right-back. The youngster should be relishing the opportunity he wouldn't have been expecting.
CB – Per Mertesacker
Mertesacker seems to have worked out the best way he can play in the Arsenal back four. He’s staying close to other defensive players, who offer him support rather than leaving himself too exposed.
CB – Laurent Koscielny
The Frenchman is one of the quickest players in Arsenal’s back four. He’s much more willing to take a risk than Mertesacker but his timing and decision making has been solid this season, despite the odd penalty he’s given away.
LB – Kieran Gibbs
At times against Napoli, Gibbs made Lorenzo Insigne look like an inexperienced youth team player when drifted out to the defender’s side. Gibbs is effective at both ends of the pitch and that’s all that Arsene Wenger can ask for.
RM – Aaron Ramsey
It will be extremely harsh on Serge Gnabry if he’s dropped for this game, especially after his performance against Swansea but the return of Tomas Rosicky to full fitness mans the young German will have to make way. Ramsey may be named on the right hand side but he’ll drift into central positions.
DM – Mathieu Flamini
Flamini has been the defensive, aggressive sort of holding player Arsenal have been missing. He demands the very best from those around him and protects the centre of defence, trying to win back possession before the defenders are put under pressure.
CM – Jack Wilshere
Wilshere didn’t start against Napoli but he should come back into the side, as he’ll be slightly fresher. He can offer support to the defence because of his aggression and he makes good runs forward from deep positions. He may switch with Ramsey on the right and Rosicky on the left frequently.
AM – Mesut Ozil
Ozil has been world class as the player in behind the striker since he joined the club. He’ll be full of confidence because he’s playing well at the moment and all of Arsenal’s attacking play is likely to flow through the German.
LM – Tomas Rosicky
Rosicky was only taken off against Napoli due to his lack of match fitness. He controlled the left hand side, linking up with the centre of midfield and getting into good attacking positions throughout his time on the pitch.
ST – Olivier Giroud
Giroud will continue in attack and he’ll be looking to add to his goal tally this season, with his seventh goal in all competitions. He gets into good positions and makes it easy for the side’s creative players to thread the ball in to him.
What do you think? Should Gnabry start? Should Arteta keep his place?
image: © wonker