In the course of Arsenal's 4-1 deconstruction of Sunderland, the back four changed pretty drastically. Nacho Monreal, starting for the injured Kieran Gibbs, had to go off at the half due to an ankle knock. He was replaced by Carl Jenkinson, pushing Bacary Sagna to the left. Then late in the second half, Laurent Koscielny took a knock to the back, having to come off for Mathieu Flamini. So at the final whistle, Arsenal's back four (from right to left) was:
Jenkinson -- Sagna -- Mertesacker -- Flamini
That's not ideal, and while it worked against a poor team that was down 4-0 at the time, it's not really what I'd like against, say, almost any other team in the upcoming schedule.
So this is encouraging.
Wenger: "Koscielny has a back problem, Monreal has a foot problem. Both should be fit for next week." #AFCvSAFC— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) February 22, 2014
Here's hoping we'll see both Monreal and Koscielny back in the starting XI when Arsenal travel to Stoke City next Saturday.