Slavia Praha v Arsenal: Match Preview

Written by Edward Pitt

April 15, 2021

Arsenal have left themselves with it all to in the second leg of their Europa League Quarter Final tie against Slavia Praha. And, with a number of top stars confirmed as being unavailable for the match, we will have to be at our very best to progress to the Semi Finals. With that in mind, here is how I think we should line up…

LENO – In goal I think it’s a pretty obvious one. I do think Ryan deserves some more opportunities for the remainder of the season, but this is a huge game for us and we need our best in net

CEDRIC – I still think that he is the best right back at the club right now. He gets forward pretty well and has a pretty good delivery. Bellerin should miss out in my opinion

HOLDING – It’s so good to see him back from injury and he is slowly getting back to his best. That being said, I wouldn’t mind seeing Callum Chambers playing in that RCB position either

GABRIEL – This one was a tough one, because I do think that Mari and Holding make a really good partnership at the back. But, I just think that Gabriel is the best centre back at the club. In terms of mobility, reading the game, one on one defending and ball-playing ability

XHAKA – Xhaka showed that he can fill in really competently at LB in the absence of Tierney. He is never going to replace Tierney’s attacking threat, but by being a natural left-footer he will hopefully be just as solid defensively

PARTEY – He was so class against Sheffield United. His ability to take the ball and turn in the midfield is so key. He does lose the ball at times, but you’ll notice that nothing ever comes from him losing the ball, because normally his mobility lets him make the recovery

CEBALLOS – At the end of the day, we need to go to Prague and score. That means perhaps not going with multiple defensive midfielders. Ceballos was really good against Sheffield United. With Partey as the anchorman, Ceballos just had that freedom to roam a little bit. His form has been up and down in the last couple of months, but on his day he can be really key for us

SAKA – If he is fit, he probably has to be the first name on the team-sheet. He is so direct and dangerous on that right hand side, and showed real threat when drifting in centrally against Sheffield. He’s going to have a great game tonight, I can tell

PEPE – Much like they did against Sheffield United, I’m expecting to see Pepe and Saka play quite fluidly. When one moves centrally, the other moves off to the right. Pepe has been playing well recently and I’ll be really disappointed if he doesn’t start. I can remember more instances this season when Pepe has played a really good game, than times when he hasn’t. Yet, on so many occasions he has been left of the side when he has been on great form. That cannot happen tonight. He deserves better

MARTINELLI – Of all the players, I knew that with Aubameyang, Odegaard and Smith Rowe all out, Martinelli should definitely play. If all else fails, you know that those Prague defenders will hate going up against him. He just won’t stop for the whole game.

LACAZETTE – He topped off a good game against Sheffield with a brace, and he should continue that against Prague. Picture it now. Partey fires the ball into Lacazette’s feet, he turns and he sees Martinelli, Pepe and Saka all running in behind

That’s how I would line us up. Very similar to how we played against Sheffield United, but with Gabriel and Cedric back in the side. But what do you think Gooners?

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