Arsenal face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in their second game of the new Premier League season, with Unai Emery’s side hoping to bounce back from last week’s defeat to Manchester City.

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After a massive test against Pep Guardiola’s side last week, Arsenal now travel to London rivals Chelsea for another big game. The two teams met in pre-season, with the Gunners coming out on top after a penalty shootout, but this time around promises to be a completely different tie.

For a start, both teams have their full starting eleven back with them. Arsenal were missing the majority of their midfielders in the pre-season game, as well as Nacho Monreal, whilst Chelsea were missing Eden Hazard, N’Golo Kante and their first choice goalkeeper.

How will the Arsenal team look this time around then?

1Goalkeeper and Defence

Arsenal's Czech goalkeeper Petr Cech gestures on the pitch after the UEFA Europa League first leg quarter-final football match between Arsenal and CSKA Moscow at the Emirates Stadium in London on April 5, 2018. Arsenal won the game 4-1. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALL

Cech is set to start in goal once again, according to reports coming from inside the club. Unai Emery also seemed to suggest that would be the case in his pre-match press conference, though he didn’t completely rule out Bernd Leno getting his debut.

The main reason I’d bet on Cech for this fixture is because he performed so well against Chelsea in pre-season. He’ll have confidence he can do the same on this occasion, and Emery will similarly have confidence in the goalkeeper as a result.

Sead Kolasinac is out with injury, and Ainsley Maitland-Niles is now out as well, so hopefully Nacho Monreal will return in time for this fixture. The Spaniard’s been back in full training for a week, so it shouldn’t be a problem for him, but if he is still struggling then Stephan Lichtsteiner will have to fill in.

Meanwhile, with Laurent Koscielny out and Calum Chambers leaving on loan, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi will likely start in central defence again.

Hector Bellerin had a good game against Manchester City, even if he didn’t quite get the credit he deserved for it, so he should start again on Saturday.


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Arsenal fan since a young age, now a season ticket holder who enjoys writing, tweeting and making videos about the Gunners.