Unai Emery is expected to start Petr Cech in Arsenal’s first game of the new Premier League season against Manchester City, according to reports.
The Telegraph write that they expected Cech to receive the captain’s armband as he starts for Arsenal this weekend. Generally the outlet is pretty reliable for this kind of Arsenal news, although there are a couple of reasons to doubt the information on this particular occasion.
Firstly, The Telegraph seem to think the game is taking place on Saturday, rather than Sunday. That’s not a major problem, but does show a lack of attention to detail.
More importantly, Emery himself seemed to suggest he hadn’t even decided on the final 18 for his match-day squad on Friday, let alone the starting eleven. He told his press conference:
“Only two young players are going today, to play tomorrow with the under-23s against Manchester City away. They are Emile Smith Rowe and Eddie Nketiah. The others, they are with us and tomorrow we decide the group for going to the hotel and also the first 11 and the first 18 players.”
Perhaps goalkeeper is the only exception, as the position is less reliant on formation or combinations of players. It’s possible Emery decided to inform Cech and Bernd Leno of his decision early, for whatever reason. We’ll have to wait until Sunday to find out though.
Both had relatively strong pre-seasons, only conceding one goal each. Neither were particularly tested in most games though. That’s apart from the Chelsea match, where Cech performed impressively. Whichever goalkeeper Emery chooses, hopefully their first competitive match of the season goes well.