Amid the looming news about the European Super League, let’s have a look at our Arsenal predicted lineup to face Everton on Friday.
After hosting Fulham at the weekend, Arsenal welcome Everton to the Emirates Stadium this Friday. You’d imagine Mikel Arteta will pick as similar a team as possible to the one he plans to choose away to Villarreal the following Thursday – injuries permitting.
For a start, he’ll want to get them going as much as possible, and there’s enough of a gap to the next game to allow for plenty of rest in between. But Everton are also just a tough opponent and Arsenal will need to go strong to get any sort of result.
Here’s our predicted Arsenal lineup for the Everton clash.
Mat Ryan got a surprise start in goal against Fulham and didn’t really put a foot wrong. He even had a hand (or head) in Arsenal’s equaliser. But he wasn’t really tested, and you’d assume Bernd Leno should come back in for this one.
Even if you think Gabriel Magalhaes is Arsenal’s best central defender, and I’m not sure I’d disagree with that assessment, it’s pretty clear that Pablo Mari and Rob Holding are the most effective available centre-back pairing.
For whatever reason, Mari and Holding just seem to suit each other better than Gabriel and Holding do. We’ve never seen Mari and Gabriel together and it seems unlikely that will start now.
Arteta brought in Mohamed Elneny for the last game to give Thomas Partey a rest, but Elneny didn’t offer enough to the game and that change will likely be reversed for this one. With Xhaka in defence, Partey will likely be partnered by Dani Ceballos again.
Bukayo Saka should be nailed on for a start, as he’s rediscovered his best form in the last week or two. Ideally, he’ll have Nicolas Pepe opposite him, given how well that worked away to Slavia Prague.
Up front, it’s really going to depend on who is available. Alexandre Lacazette is probably out with a hamstring problem, but it’s possible we might see the return of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from a malaria infection.
Perhaps this game will come too soon for him though, which would leave Gabriel Martinelli, Eddie Nketiah, and Folarin Balogun as options to start centrally. Despite Nketiah’s goal against Fulham, I have a feeling Arteta will opt for Martinelli.