Five changes Mikel Arteta can make to get Arsenal back on track
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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta will surely be considering changes to his team following Wednesday’s loss to Manchester City. The Gunners were beaten 3-1 by Pep Guardiola’s side and have dropped to second place in the Premier League table. Express Sport looks at what alterations Arteta can make ahead of Saturday’s trip to Aston Villa.
Debut for Kiwior
Jakub Kiwior is yet to play a single minute since joining from Spezia in January. The Poland international is a left-sided centre-back and could step into Gabriel’s shoes.
Gabriel had a difficult night against City and was particularly poor in the second half. He has played every minute of every Premier League game so far this season but is perhaps due a rest.
Kieran Tierney is very much the second choice left-back for Arteta. Oleksandr Zinchenko has overtaken the Scot since his arrival last summer.
However, Tierney provides something different going forward as he is more of a natural in the position. His presence would also help whoever plays on the left wing, as Zinchenko often drifts inside and leaves the likes of Gabriel Martinelli isolated.
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Vieira for Xhaka
Granit Xhaka has had his best season in an Arsenal shirt. However, his form has dipped in recent weeks.
The Swiss appeared to be struggling with an injury in the second half on Wednesday and was replaced by Fabio Vieira. The Portuguese has not exactly been demanding a starting spot with his cameo performances but could be an option as the left-sided No 8.
Trossard’s first start
Leandro Trossard is yet to make his full Premier League debut for Arsenal. He scored his first goal for the club in last weekend’s 1-1 draw against Brentford.
It isn’t clicking for Gabriel Martinelli at the moment and Trossard perhaps deserves his chance. The Belgian’s close control and eye for goal can help the Gunners in the final third.
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Martinelli up top
Martinelli may need a change of position to help him return to some sort of form. Eddie Nketiah has started every match in all competitions since the World Cup and is not used to playing every three or four days.
The striker struggled against City and missed a number of clear-cut chances. Martinelli played up front early in his Arsenal career and could be given that role on Saturday.
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