Taking a break from the league action for the EFL Cup quarter-final, let’s take a look at our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City.

Arsenal’s Spanish manager Mikel Arteta (L) leaves Goodison Park on December 19, 2020. Arteta is going relatively strong in our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City. (Photo by PETER POWELL / POOL / AFP)

There’s little to say about Arsenal’s league form at the moment that hasn’t already been said. Seven games without a win, home and away, scoring three goals in those games, there’s nothing good about it at all.

The League Cup quarter-finals are a welcome distraction, but facing Manchester City isn’t an appealing prospect – particularly given Pep Guardiola takes this competition so seriously. There’s no doubt he’ll be picking a team to win the match.

Mikel Arteta will have to pick a strong team of his own in response, with the caveat that his first-choice side just played on Saturday and face Chelsea next. Here’s our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City for Tuesday’s League Cup clash.

Goalkeeper

Arsenal's German goalkeeper Bernd Leno saves a shot from Liverpool's Portuguese striker Diogo Jota during the English League Cup fourth round football match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on October 1, 2020. (Photo by Peter Byrne / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo by PETER BYRNE/AFP via Getty Images)
Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno saves a shot from Liverpool’s Diogo Jota on October 1, 2020. Leno keeps his spot in our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City (Photo by PETER BYRNE/AFP via Getty Images)

Normally, you might expect an alternate goalkeeper to come in for a League Cup game. However, it’s Manchester City and a quarter-final at a time where Arsenal need any lift they can get, so we expect Bernd Leno to keep his spot.

Defence

Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League - Emirates Stadium Arsenal's Gabriel Magalhaes celebrates scoring his side's first goal of the game during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Copyright: Catherine Ivill
Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers – Premier League – Emirates Stadium Arsenal’s Gabriel Magalhaes celebrates scoring his side’s first goal of the game during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Gabriel returns to our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City. Copyright: Catherine Ivill

Gabriel Magalhaes had an enforced rest at the weekend due to suspension, so he should be ready to come back in alongside Kieran Tierney and Rob Holding.

Again, we expect Mikel Arteta to go strong for this one, rather than rotating. Besides, there aren’t too many alternate options available right now, with Pablo Mari and Calum Chambers seemingly still not quite at 100% after their long-term injuries.

If Arteta wants to be bold, he could give William Saliba a chance. He’s eligible and it’s probably worth the risk at this point. But we’re not going to predict that change, given the opportunities to include Saliba the manager has passed up so far.

Midfield

LONDON, ENGLAND: Joe Willock of Arsenal celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the UEFA Europa League Group B stage match between Arsenal FC and Dundalk FC at Emirates Stadium on October 29, 2020. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND: Joe Willock of Arsenal celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the UEFA Europa League Group B stage match between Arsenal FC and Dundalk FC at Emirates Stadium on October 29, 2020. Willock starts in our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

With Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey still out, Arsenal’s central midfield options are limited. Joe Willock can come in to give one of Dani Ceballos and Mohamed Elneny a break, but the other will probably still start. We’re predicting Willock and Elneny together.

Emile Smith Rowe is available, fit and a better option than most of the alternatives. But that’s been the case for a couple of weeks now and Arteta has still dropped him to the bench and refused to bring him on. We’ll believe he’s getting a start when we see it.

Bukayo Saka should keep his place on the left, with Hector Bellerin coming back in on the right. Cedric Soares is becoming the forgotten man at the moment, and Ainsley Maitland-Niles has just played the full 90 twice in four days.

Forwards

LONDON, ENGLAND: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal celebrates after scoring their team’s first goal on December 03, 2020. Lacazette reclaims his spot in our predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

The centre-forward position is becoming a bit of a revolving door, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Eddie Nketiah, Alexandre Lacazette, and Willian all trying their hands at it in the league with very limited success.

Aubameyang is currently injured, and Nketiah was the last player to get a chance, so Lacazette will probably come in for this one.

Reiss Nelson should be fit again, after returning to training in recent days. Willian has to drop out after his disappointing performance at the weekend, so Nelson is the obvious candidate to take his place.

With Saka in midfield/wing-back and Aubameyang out, that only really leaves Nicolas Pepe to start at right-wing. He also came off early against Everton, so he should be fit enough. Gabriel Martinelli is back, but probably not ready for a start just yet.

Predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City

Predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City created with Chosen11.com
Predicted Arsenal lineup vs Manchester City created with Chosen11.com