Manchester United vs Arsenal: Gunners' Predicted XI, Injury News, Suspensions and more | Premier League 2019/20
The Gunners, after a couple of unconvincing results against Liverpool and Watford, have found their groove just a touch, notching up three victories on the bounce in different competitions.
While they got the better of Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League, they edged past Aston Villa in the league last weekend before they saw off the challenge of Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup.
Thus, the North London outfit would be hoping to bag another positive result at Old Trafford and pile further misery on the Red Devils.
Encouragingly for the Gunners, apart from Alexandre Lacazette, most of their first-team players have regained fitness, including the defensive trio of Hector Bellerin, Kieran Tierney and Rob Holding.
Nicolas Pepe, too, seems to have shaken off the niggle that contributed to him missing the international fixtures and looks primed to make an impact, especially after finding the back of the net for the first time as an Arsenal player against Aston Villa.
Hence, at this juncture, Unai Emery has plenty of defensive and offensive options to choose from, which incidentally, is in stark contrast to the situation United find themselves in.
Yet, with the Spaniard’s reputation as a ‘tactical chameleon’, it remains to be seen what line-up he opts for come Monday.
Here, we take a look at the personnel and the shape that he might prefer for the trip to Manchester.
Predicted XI (4-3-3)
Apart from Ainsley Maitland-Niles, the Gunners don’t have any other suspensions to worry about, meaning that they almost have a full complement of players to choose from.
In such a scenario, Bernd Leno is expected to start in goal, despite Emiliano Martinez keeping two clean sheets in his last two starts.
David Luiz and Sokratis are likely to act as the centre-back pairing ahead of the German, in light of the experience the duo provides and the fact that Holding has just had a solitary game under his belt since his recovery.
At full-back, Calum Chambers would, in all likelihood, be rewarded for his brilliant displays against Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest whereas Sead Kolasinac would man the other flank.
Though the Bosnian has some tough competition in the form of Tierney, the Scottish international’s long injury lay-off could prompt Emery to field the former, at least against United.
In midfield, the places of Granit Xhaka and Matteo Guendouzi seem to be set in stone, especially considering the stupendous form the Frenchman has enjoyed this season.
The third midfield spot remains a matter of debate with Dani Ceballos and Lucas Torreira being the prime candidates.
However, Emery might just give his countryman the nod over the Uruguayan, considering the creative edge and guile that Ceballos brings to the table.
Up front, the energetic and pacey triumvirate of Bukayo Saka, Nicolas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are expected to start with the teenager, in particular, massively impressing in recent weeks.
Moreover, the African duo of Aubameyang and Pepe seem to enjoy a good understanding between them and they could be key to Arsenal’s fortunes when they face the Red Devils.
Arsenal Predicted XI (4-3-3)
Bernd Leno; Calum Chambers, Sokratis, David Luiz, Sead Kolasinac; Granit Xhaka, Matteo Guendouzi, Dani Ceballos; Nicolas Pepe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Bukayo Saka