I’m not sure if Thursday was a continuation of a troubling pattern or an actual repeat of a match I’ve already seen this season. Arsenal controls the start of the match, concedes a goal against the run of play, receives a red card, and proceeds to lose the match. It’s been a bad January, from what could have been a terrific month. Perhaps if things go differently Arsenal beat Manchester City, advance in the FA Cup, and make it to the League Cup Final. You would imagine Mikel Arteta will be delighted to get three points at the weekend and turn the page on a rough January.
Remember Burnley? If you thought Arsenal have had some delays, meet Burnley. If this match takes place it will be just their third this month and first since January 8th. Like Arsenal, they are in a run of defeats - four losses and one draw in their last five. The Gunners won the meeting earlier this season 1-0 on the road, but Burnley left the Emirates with three points on their last visit — also a 1-0 result.
After this, it’s another long international break. When Arsenal returns on February 10th against Wolves the transfer market drama will have settled. Will Aubameyang and Leno still be Arsenal players? Will the club have pulled off the shock move for Vlahovic or the recent rumor of MLS-keeper Matt Turner?
- Karl Hein
- Nuno Tavares
- Rob Holding
- Calum Chambers
- Eddie Nketiah
- Salah Oulad M’Hand
- Charlie Patino
- Mika Biereth
- Left Out: Arthur Okonkwo
- Out: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Returning to fitness / potential move out of the club this month), Mohamed Elneny (AFCON), Thomas Partey (Red Card), Pepe (AFCON), Bernd Leno (rumored loan move away from Arsenal in January), Granit Xhaka (Red Card)
- Mikel Arteta doesn’t have much he can really change from Thursday. Unless someone isn’t fit to start again, this is the best XI. Having Martin Odegaard back in the midfield may actually be to Arsenal’s benefit against Burnley. You would expect the Clarets to sit back, forcing Arsenal to use their creativity and interplay to unlock the first goal.
- It’s a thin squad once again, needing at least four U23 players with the possibility of up to six on the bench based on the unknown injury status of Calum Chambers and Cedric for the weekend.
- If Calum Chambers and or Cedric remain out for the match, then we will likely see Ryan Alebiosu back on the bench as he was for the Carabao Cup second leg.
- While it would be nice to see the likes of Charlie Patino get a start, Arsenal absolutely have to have three points this weekend.
How to watch
Sunday (1/23) at 9:00 am ET / 6:00 am PT on USA Network.
Arsenal - 2
Burnley - 0
Mikel Arteta will want Sunday to be clinical and resolved by half-time. The squad has to respond after four straight deflating defeats. At home against the team bottom of the Premier League and ahead of an international break. Some of the key players may not be 100% coming off various issues, but the crowd should be massive in the opening half-hour. Pressure, quick passes, and a lot of Martinelli please.