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Arsenal vs. Chelsea: Premier League - Predicted Lineup & Bench

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With at least five players ruled out for Tuesday, how will Arteta change from Saturday?

Arsenal FC v Sheffield United - Premier League Photo by Visionhaus

For the second straight week Arsenal took a one goal lead over a team ahead of them in the Premier League table, before seeing it slip away in the second half. Arsenal remain in 10th position on 29 points, five back from the Europa League spot and 10 behind Tuesday’s opponent Chelsea.

The two sides played to a 2-1 defeat for Arsenal back on December 29th, in what was Mikel Arteta’s second game in charge. The Blues recently rolled past Burnley 3-0 before dropping their most recent match thanks to a very late goal from Newcastle. Mikel Arteta is dealing with a number of absentees and will be facing an opponent who will push the offensive side of the game far more than Sheffield. So how should the manager adjust his lineup?

Check out the gallery below for the predicted starting XI versus Chelsea.

Notes on the XI

  • The club officially ruled Aubameyang (red card), Chambers (knee), Kolasinac (left tigh strain), Nelson (hamstring), and Tierney (shoulder). Sokratis is the lone player on the team report that will be a game day decision. However after the defense went asleep at the end against Sheffield United I expect Arteta to bring Sokratis back in for Mustafi if available. If he is ruled out Tuesday then Holding lines up besides Luiz and Mustafi is on the bench.
  • With Aubameyang and Nelson out, Mikel doesn’t have much choice but to stick with the same front four - a group who can, and should, improve over Saturday’s performance. The returning Nketiah is the only other striker option, while Ceballos or Willock could fill in at the 10 spot, but I like the chances of an unchanged front four.
  • The same applies for the center of the park. Baring injury I’m not sure Arteta moves away either Torreira or Xhaka just yet in favor of Guendouzi or Willock - defensive discipline over more legs in attack.
  • Kolasinac remains out through the next international break, so Saka continues at the left back spot. Not ideal against Chelsea, but he did set up the lone assist on Saturday. On the other side of the pitch is where I think Arteta might make his second change. Hector Bellerin was on the bench against Sheffield United and a return against Chelsea would be ideal to help against what should be a more aggressive attack.
  • This lineup & bench, combined with these absences, make up the entire Arsenal two-deep roster, plus a player on the three-deep line in the attacking front four. Behind them the Gunners have Mustafi, Emile Smith Rowe & U23 players. The January transfer window remains open...

Bench

  1. Emiliano Martinez
  2. Rob Holding
  3. Ainsley Maitland-Niles
  4. Mattéo Guendouzi
  5. Dani Ceballos
  6. Joe Willock
  7. Eddie Nketiah

How to watch

Tuesday (1/18) at 3:15 am ET / 12:15 am PT on NBC Sports.