Arsenal are set to return to the Emirates for their final pre-season friendly tonight, as they take on AS Monaco in the Emirates Cup.
The match will be played in front of a sell-out crowd eager to see new signings Jurrien Timber, Declan Rice and Kai Havertz in action, ahead of Sunday’s Community Shield clash at Wembley.
The game also has an extra symbolic significance, with Arsenal taking on Arsene Wenger’s old club following the unveiling of the legendary manager’s statue outside the ground, and it is sure to be an exciting occasion, and the match will kick off at 6pm UK time.
Arteta is set to play a strong side to get everyone up to speed for Sunday, but with Oleksandr Zinchenko still injured, there has been a hint that Kieran Tierney could play at left-back, with the official Arsenal Twitter account putting the defender front and centre ahead of the game.
The predicted XI
With Matt Turner currently in talks with Nottingham Forest, it seems that Aaron Ramsdale will keep his place in goal.
MORE ARSENAL STORIES
All three new signings could be unveiled to the Emirates crowd from the start, so Timber, Rice and Havertz may all come into the lineup, with Ben White and Thomas Partey on the bench.
Leandro Trossard, who was excellent against Barcelona, could start at left-wing where he could link up well with Tierney overlapping, and Timber could play the inverted fullback role to facilitate this.
Arsenal: Ramsdale, Timber, Saliba, Gabriel, Tierney, Rice, Odegaard, Havertz, Saka, Jesus, Trossard.
There will be plenty of substitutions throughout, with the likes of Emile Smith Rowe and Eddie Nketiah itching for a chance to play.
Gabriel Martinelli, who has been described as “frightening,” will have to settle for a place on the bench with Trossard starting, and the two wingers will fiercely battle for a starting spot throughout the season in what is arguably Arsenal’s strongest position in terms of quality in depth.
Arteta may end up using 11 substitutes throughout the game, with the likes of Jorginho and Takehiro Tomiyasu also expected to play a part, but he could pick this lineup to help the new signings gel and the team prepare for Wembley.