Norwich City travels to the Emirates Stadium to take on Arsenal in what appears to be the first of this season’s relegation battles – yes it is – 20th place entertaining 19th place for a chance to get out of the relegation zone.
The Gunners have endured their worst start to a Premier League campaign in the club’s history, but with all of their new signings ready to go for this match and some injury returns of key players, it seems like an easy three points for Arsenal to collect when they face Norwich City.
The Canaries have been unable to win any of the last 23 league matches that they’ve played in London – this could play in Arsenal’s favor and give them some confidence going into the match against the newly-promoted Norwich.
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Despite the bad run of games, things are looking up for the North Londoners; Arteta has no big injuries problems with some key figures rejoining full training during international duty. The pause in club action could not have come at a better time and actually worked as a saving grace for the Spaniard whose job is on the line.
Finally, Ben White and Gabriel are going to be able to partner up as the center-back pairing in the backline, since the Brazilian is back and up to speed.
Also, Thomas Partey has been practicing with the squad and is looking sharp during training – it seems likely that he would start this weekend but Arteta will probably not risk him and cut his time short rather than let him play the full 90 minutes.
The only issue that Arteta is faced with, in his team selection, is that Tomiyasu has just joined the squad and it might be too soon for him to get a start, but Arteta would most likely give him the nod since he’s the best option at the right-back position.
How the Gunners can line up against Norwich
Like we said before, Arteta finally has a full squad at his disposal to choose from, which he hasn’t had since the first matchday. Now, with all this in mind, what is the best XI Arteta can put out to secure Arsenal’s first three points, that they need so desperately.
Goalkeeper: Bernd Leno
Defense: Takehiro Tomiyasu, Ben White, Gabriel, Kieran Tierney
Midfielders: Thomas Partey, Albert Lokonga
Attacking Midfielders: Nicolas Pepe, Martin Ødegaard, Bukayo Saka
Forward: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
If no late mishaps or injury setbacks occur, this should be Arteta’s lineup for Saturday’s game. Also, this is probably Arsenal’s best XI for the campaign and until the next transfer window – so it is a starting lineup we would probably be seeing a lot of this term.
Nothing less than a victory will be acceptable for Arsenal and if they do manage to stuff-up a win against a club fighting for Premier League survival, then rightly so, Mikel Arteta should not be in a job following Matchday 4.
There is a lot riding on this match, especially for the North London boss. Over in the other dugout, they have the chance to kick a dog while he is down, something that should be playing over and over in their heads over at Carrow Road.