Arsenal continue their Premier League campaign as they host Everton on Friday. There are question marks over the availability of a few players, so let’s us see who will be missing in action this week.
The North London club need to get a win over the Toffees to move ahead of them in the League table, but the visitors have a strong team that will look to continue their pursuit of Champions League places. Tactically, this game will be decided in the midfield as both sides have a wealth of talent in the middle. The hosts will be hoping that youngsters such as Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith-Rowe will be able to make the difference.
Now for the team news, both David Luiz and Kieran Tierney will not take any part as they are still recovering from their respective injuries. There is also a doubt over the fitness of Martin Odegaard and the midfielder will be assessed ahead of the game.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette are still unavailable and that is a big blow for Mikel Arteta. The captain is recovering from malaria and won’t be fit in time for Friday. The Frenchman suffered an injury against Fulham last Sunday and will be assessed next week.
Mikel Arteta will have to rethink his strategies in attack with his senior strikers missing in action. There is the option of going with Eddie Nketiah who got the equaliser against the Cottagers, but the more likely outcome is that Gabriel Martinelli plays up front. The Brazilian has the energy and skill to hassle and harry the visiting defence. Everton are likely to play with three centre backs and the Gunners will need someone like Martinelli to apply pressure.
Arsenal will look at this game as ideal preparation for the Europa League semi-final first leg against Villarreal. Everton are a tough team and the North Londoners will have to be wary against crosses from the wings. The aerial prowess of Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin in particular will prove to be a challenge. But if Saka, Smith-Rowe and Nicolas Pepe combine welll, it will be tough for the Toffees to prevent Arsenal from scoring. Though they will have a tough game, the hosts should be getting the three points.
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