Arsenal make the short visit to Chelsea this evening as they look to build on their impressive win over Manchester City before the international break. Mikel Arteta has a number of injury doubts to contend with and Express Sport looks at the starting XI he could pick at Stamford Bridge, including three changes from last time out.
Goalkeeper – Raya
Aaron Ramsdale has spoken this week on his determination to get back in the Arsenal side. However, that is unlikely to see a change happen as quickly as this weekend.
Arteta has seemingly decided upon David Raya as his No 1 for the immediate future at least. The Spaniard had a shaky start against City but came good in the second half, as Arsenal kept a home clean sheet in the league for the first time this season.
Defence – White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko
The main injury doubt at the back surrounds William Saliba. He pulled out of the France squad due to a toe injury.
Arteta said on Friday that he hoped it wouldn’t be an issue that hampers him long term. The two weeks off may have done him some good and he could start today.
If so, it would be the same back four that started against City. Oleksandr Zinchenko has managed to stave off injury of late in a boost to Arteta’s style of play.
Read more… Sir Jim Ratcliffe plans quick Man Utd takeover as INEOS chief ‘sets deadline’
Mikel Arteta provides fitness update on Bukayo Saka ahead of Chelsea clash
Midfield – Partey, Odegaard, Rice
Thomas Partey gained valuable minutes during the international break. He played the first half of Ghana’s 2-0 loss to Mexico and just over an hour of the 4-0 defeat to the USA.
He hasn’t started in the Premier League since August but could be drafted in for this one in place of Jorginho. Martin Odegaard and Declan Rice are certainties to play if fit.
Kai Havertz may have to settle for a place on the bench on his first return to Stamford Bridge. Jorginho, who played over 200 times for the Blues, will likely do the same.
- Advert-free experience without interruptions.
- Rocket-fast speedy loading pages.
- Exclusive & Unlimited access to all our content.
Liverpool eyeing two signings in January as long-term target ‘seeks move'[GOSSIP]
Sheikh Jassim ‘sends furious letter to Glazers’ as Qatari hints at project[REPORT]
Man Utd trio sparked Sancho bust-up in training as January transfer talks begin[INSIGHT]
Attack – Saka, Jesus, Martinelli
Two further changes come in attack, with Arteta hoping to be able to field both Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli. Saka has been struggling with a hamstring problem but Arteta says he is hoping to play.
Martinelli hasn’t started in over a month due to a similar issue but played the second half against City, scoring the late winner. He could have a good battle with Chelsea captain Reece James, if he returns from injury.
Eddie Nketiah may drop out of the team for this one, as could Leandro Trossard who has had an injury concern of his own. Gabriel Jesus therefore could move back centrally after playing out wide in recent matches for his club.
Arsenal predicted XI vs Chelsea in full: Raya; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Partey, Odegaard, Rice; Saka, Jesus, Martinelli
Source: Read Full Article