Predicted Arsenal XI to play Manchester United - Gibbs and Podolski to start

Match to be played on Wednesday 12th February 2014 at 19:45. Venue: Emirates Stadium, London.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will be looking for a strong reaction from his team following their humiliation at Liverpool over the weekend.

Things don’t get any easier for the Gunners as they prepare to host Manchester United. United have been on the ropes for most of this season but have a lot of experience and quality in their side.

Here’s the team Wenger could go with.

GK – Wojciech Szczesny

The Pole will continue in goal. Several of the goals against Liverpool he couldn’t do anything about and he’ll have that determination to ensure that his defence isn’t breached.

RB – Bacary Sagna

Sagna has been one of the best right-backs in the Premier League this season. He gets up and down the right wing well and injects vital experience into the back four.

CB – Per Mertesacker

Struggled against the pace and movement of Liverpool but he carries an intimidating presence which is important. He can cut out the aerial threat which could make United easier to contain.

CB – Laurent Koscielny

Koscielny was simply outplayed by Luis Suarez over the weekend. The Frenchman remains a very good defender and he’ll be a bit sharper after watching the weekend footage.

LB – Kieran Gibbs

Gibbs could get the nod to start this game after Monreal suffered at Anfield. Gibbs’ pace is going to be crucial if Arsenal are forced to counter attack at any point.

RM – Santi Cazorla

Cazorla has played down both wings so far this season and he could start over on the right. When Sagna gets forward, he’ll tuck inside to get involved centrally where he’s most effective.

DM – Mikel Arteta

Arteta will most likely be the player who sits and protects the defence. He’s not as aggressive as Mathieu Flamini but he still reads the play very well and will look to pick United off.

CM – Jack Wilshere

Wilshere looked frustrated at times against Liverpool. It’s important for him to get on the ball and play smart, simple football with those around him.

AM – Mesut Ozil

Ozil has been quiet for several weeks but United are a side he’s had success against in the past. If he can get on the ball and create a goal, or score himself, it could give him some momentum heading into further important fixtures.

LM – Lukas Podolski

One change Wenger could make is to bring the German in on the left side of midfield. It would be harsh on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain but it would freshen things up and Podolski also has the ability to play up front.

ST – Olivier Giroud

Giroud admitted he was poor against Liverpool, which shows he’s already determined and already thinking about how he can turn things around in this game.

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