The XI: Anderlecht vs Arsenal – Sanchez out! Arteta returns
Bellerin – Mertesacker– Chambers – Gibbs
Ramsey – Arteta
Campbell – Cazorla – Podolski
Wojciech Szczesny’s suspension and David Ospina’s injury means Damian Martinez is the only choice in goal. Calum Chambers is back so we should be spared from seeing Nacho Monreal at centre-back. We also should give credit to Gibbs for managing to stay off the injury list by the way.
Mikel Arteta returned on Saturday and he should be back in the side along with Aaron Ramsey on Wednesday. Despite Arteta’s own frailties in that defensive midfield role, Mathieu Flamini’s shows of late will have you calling upon anyone else available.
This should be ‘that’ chance for Joel Campbell and Lukas Podolski. But their inclusion may not raise as many eyebrows as Alexis Sanchez’s omission. Why though? Because Sanchez requires a rest or risks joining Ozil, Koscielny and Giroud. The Chilean had a very busy international break even though his performance on Saturday said otherwise. He is Arsenal’s talisman at the moment and considering how ubiquitous injuries have become at the club, it may not be a bad idea to protect Sanchez for the massive weeks ahead. The idea will be to keep him and the Ox on the bench until needed at Anderlecht.
Make no mistake about it, Anderlecht away will be quite test and that is why Santi Cazorla should retain his place despite the temptation of playing Tomas Rosicky.
And with no alternate available, Danny Welbeck – who is also in solid form – should start.