4-2-3-1: Rob Holding replaces Gabriel – Our predicted line-up vs Man. City
Reasons for Selection
We all knew that dealing with the absence of Shkodran Mustafi could be difficult and so it proved on Tuesday night as Everton scored twice from balls the combative German international would have dealt with.
This is not a personal attack on Gabriel but he has never displayed a strong partnership with Laurent Koscielny since arriving in early 2015 and with Chelsea running away with the title, there is no time to retry that experiment.
That is why Rob Holding, who has often been solid when paired up with Koscielny, has to come in for the trip to Manchester City. It will certainly be a massive game and perhaps a nervy experience for the 21-year-old if he is to be called upon.
Then again, what have we got to lose after the free headers we gave away at Goodison Park?
Theo Walcott was not convincing in the midweek affair but he is a player who often makes some sort of impact in big games and therefore, he cannot be dropped simply out of frustration. On the opposite flank, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain should be handed another chance to get it right. He is never really allowed to complete the 90 minutes anyway and at some point, Wenger has to show the same faith in him that he showed in worse players like Nicklas Bendtner and Gervinho in the past.