Arsenal have had a real dismal season but somehow they still have a shot at a potential European spot next campaign as they prepare to play their final game of the Premier League season.
The Gunners take on Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday and they go into this match sitting ninth on the league table with 58 points. The best they can do is climb up to the seventh spot but for that to happen, a lot of things will have to fall into place.
Spurs and Everton are the two teams who are within touching distance from Arsenal and for them to climb up the table, both Tottenham and Everton will have to lose their respective matches on Sunday.
The North London can hope for a miracle since Spurs will face Leicester on the final day while Everton take on Manchester City. But before that, they will need to pick up a win themselves and this will be easier said than done since Brighton have just defeated Manchester City during the week.
Arsenal team news vs Brighton & Hove Albion:
David Luiz is on the sidelines with a thigh injury so Gabriel and Rob Holding are set to start in central defence once again. Mikel Arteta also has the option of bringing Pablo Mari into the side if he wishes to.
Hector Bellerin sustained a bruising on the bone during the Chelsea game and it’s unlikely he will be fit in time to face Brighton. With Bellerin out, Calum Chambers will play as the right full-back.
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Granit Xhaka returned from injury in midweek and the Swiss international should replace Elneny in central midfield with Thomas Partey keeping his place in the side. Elneny has done pretty well in the past couple of matches but there’s no denying that the Arsenal boss trusts Xhaka more.
Emile Smith Rowe started in the attacking midfielder’s role against Palace in midweek but Arteta could shuffle things around on Sunday with Martin Odegaard coming into the starting line-up.
Many think that a start for Odegaard against Brighton could hint at the fact that Arsenal are keen to sign him on a permanent deal during the summer transfer window.
Nicolas Pepe has scored three goals in Arsenal’s last two games which is more than enough to guarantee him another start down the right wing. The selection of Pepe means Bukayo Saka will have to slot into the left-hand side of attack.
Aubameyang playing as the main centre-forward in midweek and we expect the Arsenal boss to use the same tactics on Sunday as well. This means Lacazette is going to start on the bench and could come on as a second-half sub.
Stats via Whoscored