Youngsters to get chance against Blackpool

Arsenal will look to extend their unbeaten run to 13 against Blackpool tonight.

After the 11 game winning run turned into 12 unbeaten at the weekend against Crystal Palace, Unai Emery is expected to ring in the changes.

Against Palace, a few players looked tired. It was a lethargic performance. One which came from 3 games in 7 days, and Arsenal having played a European away barely 60 hours previous.

Arsenal beat Brentford in the previous round of the League Cup with a surprisingly strong team. With Liverpool in the Premier League coming up on Saturday, it is expected that Emery will rotate with his squad, with very few playing against Blackpool who will be in line to start against Liverpool.

Petr Cech will return to the side in replace for Bernd Leno – the German has solidified his position as Arsenal’s number one in recent weeks.

Right back will be interesting. Hector Bellerin is currently struggling with a muscle injury; so it is not expected that Stephan Lichtsteiner will be risked. This could see a return in a first team Arsenal shirt for Carl Jenkinson.

Sokratis will be one of the few to start against both Blackpool and Liverpool; having missed out on the Crystal Palace game.

Alongside him will either be Shkodran Mustafi or Rob Holding. My bet is Holding as I think Emery will go for the experience of Mustafi and Sokratis at the weekend.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles is likely to return to the side at left back following a length lay off. With Nabhco Monreal and Saed Kolasinac still sidelined with niggles, neither will be risks. All 3 would then be in contention for the game against Liverpool.

The League Cup will be the only competition Mohamed Elneny will be given a consistent run out in this season. I expect him to be alongside Matteo Guendouzi in the middle of the park. The teenage Frenchman is likely to make way for the Lucas Torreira / Granit Xhaka partnership on Saturday.

Having found himself out of Emery’s plans in recent weeks, Aaron Ramsey will play as the furthest midfielder forward.

Emile Smith Rowe will play on one flank, continuing his progress in the team.

The other wing position and upfront could depend on who Emery wants to give a chance too.

It is a fight between Joe Willock and Eddie Nketiah, with Danny Welbeck filling the other position. I expect Nketiah to be up top, and Welbeck on the wing.


1 thought on “Youngsters to get chance against Blackpool

  1. zhord49

    Elneny is injured. I think Ramsey’s going to start in a two man midfield with Guendouzi. I hope he won’t leave the young lad exposed every time.



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