The Premier League’s match-day 29 fixtures is set to kickoff on Saturday’s launch-time as the Gunners welcome West Ham United to the Emirates Stadium.
Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side were involved in the mid-week FA Cup competition and comfortably secured a 2-0 victory over Portsmouth at the Fratton Park Stadium and a win against the Hammers on Saturday afternoon will make it two wins in two games for the Gunners
Ahead of the London derby, let’s take a look players that could make the match-day squad:
German goalkeeper Bernd Leno is expected to return to the starting XI after being rested against the League One side on Monday.
Though Martinez kept a clean sheet against the promotion-chasing side, I’m afraid he hasn’t done enough to displace Leno from Arteta’s first eleven.
Hector Bellerin, who wasn’t included in the club’s traveling squad on Monday, is expected to regain his spot in the team.
The Spaniard has been a mainstay in the team since he returned from injury, and he will hope to help the Gunners record a famous victory over West Ham. This means that Sokratis Papastathopoulos will return to the bench for this one.
David Luiz will surely keep his spot at the heart of defense alongside Shkodran Mustafi who was left out of the team that defeated Portsmouth.
Though Pablo Mari was immense for the North London club on Tuesday, it is arguably too early to see him leapfrog rejuvenated Mustafi in the pecking order.
18-year-old Bukayo Saka is definitely set for another starting role as long as there are no unforeseen circumstances.
Real Madrid loanee Dani Ceballos and Granit Xhaka will feature at the base of the midfield as they will be charged with the responsibility of providing a strong shield for the back four.
Mesut Ozil will feature as the link between the midfield and attack. The German has somewhat returned to form and his teammates will rely on his creativity to provide some goal-scoring opportunities.
In-form Aubameyang will return to the line-up following his inactive role on Monday. The Gabonese is currently the Gunners top goalscorer and they will rely solely on his goal-scoring abilities during the upcoming encounter.
Nicholas Pepe is tipped to start despite his unimpressive stats in front of goal this season. The Ivorian has struggled to hit the ground running at the Emirates Stadium but Arteta will likely give him a starting berth against West Ham.
Hale End Academy product Eddie Nketiah is expected to be the club’s centre-forward ahead of Alexandre Lacazette due to his present form.
Summary: Arsenal XI (4-2-3-1): Leno; Bellerin, Luiz, Mustafi, Saka; Ceballos, Xhaka; Pepe, Ozil, Aubameyang; Nketiah.