Arsenal face Sporting Lisbon this week in the UEFA Europa League, and for many supporters, this is a competition Mikel Arteta should be looking to win.

The Gunners are one of the favourites to win the tournament this season despite how good the level of opposition is this time around, with Sporting likely to give Arsenal a good test in Portugal on Thursday night, especially with the north London side missing some key players.

Leandro Trossard and Eddie Nketiah have both been ruled out for this clash with Gabriel Jesus unlikely to be back in time to feature right from the start against Sporting, leaving Arteta with already some big questions to answer over who will start in the attack.

With that in mind, though, here is Arsenal Insider’s predicted starting XI to face Sporting in the Europa League.

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Kiwior makes Arsenal debut with Smith Rowe in to face Sporting Lisbon

Arsenal predicted XI vs Sporting Lisbon

As well as with the attack, some questions should be asked about Arsenal’s defence to face Sporting, with William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes all in need of a rest ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash against Fulham. And as a result, Jakub Kiwior finally makes his debut for the Gunners.

The Polish international was a surprise signing for Arsenal in January as the Gunners beat some strong competition to land the defender from Spezia. Though with Arteta’s side leading the Premier League title race, it’s understandable why Kiwior is yet to play for the senior team.

Yet that could well change tomorrow against Sporting, with the Portuguese side a good test for Kiwior alongside Rob Holding in central defence, with Matt Turner returning in goal and Ben White back in at right-back having started on the bench on Saturday, with Oleksandr Zinchenko starting ahead of the unwell Kieran Tierney.

Arsenal Sporting Lisbon
Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

The midfield will also see some changes with Jorginho coming in for Thomas Partey as Granit Xhaka returns having also been dropped to the bench against AFC Bournemouth, with club captain Martin Odegaard rounding off the trio with Mohamed Elneny still out through injury.

Completing the XI we have Emile Smith Rowe taking up his former left-wing position with Gabriel Martinelli slotting in at centre-forward, with Saturday’s hero Reiss Nelson making his first start of the year for Arsenal after an incredible cameo from the bench against the Cherries.

Arsenal’s attacking trio might seem very chaotic, but with Bukayo Saka as an option on the bench and Jesus potentially in line to feature as a substitute, Arteta’s young front-three of Smith Rowe, Martinelli and Nelson could cause Sporting some serious damage out in Lisbon.

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