Arsenal got back to winning ways this weekend beating Sheffield United in the Premier League and this 3-0 win will be a big confidence booster before their Europa League game against Slavia Prague.
Slavia Prague managed to score a 93rd minute equaliser in the first leg, thereby getting that crucial away goal and this will make things a lot more complicated since the Gunners will now have to find the back of the net this Thursday.
Mikel Arteta used a few players out of position during the weekend’s win but the manager is expected to set up a more conventional starting line-up at the Eden Arena this week.
Slavia Prague have managed to knock out big teams like Rangers and Leicester City already in the Europa League this season and if Arsenal are as wasteful as they were in the first leg, then we don’t see why the Czech side can’t overcome a third British side in the tournament.
Arsenal team news vs Slavia Prague:
Pablo Mari and Rob Holding started in central defence vs Sheffield United but Gabriel will be coming back into the side to replace Mari. Callum Chambers will also move to the bench on Thursday to make way for Hector Bellerin at right-back.
Granit Xhaka had to play at left-back at the weekend but the midfielder will return to his usual role in defensive midfield alongside Thomas Partey. Cedric Soares will operate at left-back.
David Luiz and Kieran Tierney are both long-term absentees.
With Xhaka coming back into midfield, Dani Ceballos will move back to the bench which is a bit harsh since he played pretty well against the Blades.
Emile Smith Rowe sprained his left ankle during the first leg and remains a doubt for Thursday’s game as well. Martin Odegaard is another playmaker who is facing a race against time to be available for selection but Mikel Arteta had already mentioned last week that the Norwegian could miss the next two matches.
If Smith Rowe and Odegaard are both not available then Bukayo Saka will once again have to play in the attacking midfielder’s role with Nicolas Pepe operating as the right winger.
Aubameyang missed Sunday’s game due to illness and he was also absent from training at the start of the week for the very same reason. It’s not sure if he will recover in time or not but if the Gabon international is not fully fit then Gabriel Martinelli will get another chance to showcase his talents.
Lacazette scored a brace against Sheffield United and he is a guaranteed starter against Slavia Prague as well.
Injury updates via Premier Injuries.