Arsenal in 2021: 4-2-3-1 Strongest Team plus One New Player

For many reasons 2020 will be remembered as a year of lows and a few highs. We Gunners have experienced the football lows but we are also one of the few sets of lucky supporters who actually had something to celebrate. Arteta gave us an unforgettable summer, but after that it has been a real roller-coaster. Are Arsenal a team in decline and doomed, or are we slowly witnessing the start of a new beginning?

It is still early days but it looks like Arteta is going to play the 4-2-3-1 formation more regularly from now on. I would welcome that. Reducing the number of out and out attackers i.e. pure finishers to just one would suit me fine. I, like Wenger in the previous decade, like lots of skillful midfielders who know how to defend, pass the ball well and are able to hold on to it, or dribble with it, on a constant basis. Playing Auba, Laca and Pepe up-front really has not paid off and I doubt it ever will. It was time for change.

We have a lot of good midfielders and if Arteta were to opt for the 2 + 3 midfielders formation from now on then the likes of Martinelli, Willian, ESR, Saka, Willock, Nelson and AMN should have plenty of opportunity to play first team football in all competitions. The question is whether we would need to add real quality in the ‘2’ or ‘3’ this January, or that we should better spend our money in another area. Do we have a more urgent need to add a more all-round CF than we currently have (one who is strong in the air and does hold up play really well)? Or should we add another defender to strengthen our defence?

Now let’s imagine, just for a bit of winter-fun, the club manage to let a few players go who are no longer required and are able to free up funds to buy one just quality player for around £40m this January: who would you like us to get? You can spend less, or more if you have to, but it can only be one player. Furthermore, what would be your strongest eleven to beat the vast majority of teams in the PL? So I am not talking about the one off occasions of playing Pool or Man City but how we can beat the sort of teams who got the better of us in recent months on a regular basis.

I am wary to put forward my team as I am more interested in the views of our bloggers (and new bloggers are very welcome too) and I don’t want to influence this too much. But just to kick-start the discussion, here is my strongest 11 + 1 newly purchased player:

I am certain about all positions except CF, Nr10, and RB. I love Hector and would not want to lose him, but this is the position I reckon we have the strongest need to buy an upgrade. With a more mobile style of football with strong runs into the box by midfielders, we may not need the strong-in-the-air CF as much as we did when we were playing the 3-4-3 formation. I am also less convinced that we most urgently need a new nr10, but I know that many disagree with this. So if it was up to me, I would go for a quality right back and I have been very impressed by Ajax’s Mazraoui, lately. I think he would offer on the right what Tierney offers on the left.

So there you go, that’s my choice…. What is yours?

By TotalArsenal.

61 thoughts on “Arsenal in 2021: 4-2-3-1 Strongest Team plus One New Player

  • Well T I still think we need a CAM more than any team in the league does. Could really bring along ESR like a proper big club should. Working him in without pressure or rush, protect his fitness too, since he’s had issues..

    A right back as good as our true Captain Tierney? Would be a dream but almost too much to ask. Of course I trust you on any Ajax product.

    Peter from last post…… I have vocally been in agreement and I’ll say it again. Elneny is ok to have in the team, but not against lower teams like these. Using him there highlights our weak midfield. Hopefully we’ll address that, at least by summer. Nice as an energetic defensive shield against dangerous attacks. That’s about it.

  • For me it’s a number 10. We need an eponymous DB10 to release a speedy Auba, just as he did for Wrighty, Anelka and then TH14. DeBruyne is the closest living thing to our hero, but we couldn’t prise him away from the Manc’s. Willian is a fantastic footballer, but is off the boil. Ozil, even better but is history. Aouar? Isco? Grealish?

    Bellerin Holding Gabriel Tierny
    Partey Xhaka
    Saka DB10 type Martinelli

  • Interesting responses. It looks like most want another creative midfielder, ideally a nr10 sort of player.

    Tallman that 4-4-2 is quite attractive and you have not spend a penny! 🙂

    Kev, Brandt means fire (in Dutch, although it is spelled with out the ‘t’ at the end): a bit of extra fire would not go amiss.

    J, if we play three behind the striker we have plenty of creative power in the team. Saka, ESR/Willian, Martinelli all can pick a killer pass, and so can Ceballos. However, I do think they are all young and will not score many goals as yet, so a high scoring midfielder, like Chelsea have Havertz, would be very welcome (although he is currently not doing that for the Chavs). I am surprised you did not pick a player… 🙂

    Stu, good comment and welcome. Another shout for a nr10. With that line up it is hard to argue that a quality nr10 would not make a big difference.

  • Arsenal A:

    Arsenal B:

    Sold: Sokratis, Kolasinac, Mustafi
    Retired: Ozil, Luiz
    Utility subs: Mavropanos, Soares, Elneny, Willian, John-Jules, Balogun

  • Cheers PB,
    A refreshing take on it.

    So are you saying that your Arsenal A team is the one that would be our strongest and will beat the majority PL teams (and that Havertz or Aouar will make all the difference)? Are you really suggesting to leave Saka and Martineli out?

  • Well… I didn’t want to leave Auba out. 🙂
    But joking aside I think my A team consists the best players of their particular positions (bar Holding, as I don’t think we have a best RCB at the moment, but him, Mustafi, Luiz and Chambers are all capable to perform on a high level – as well as provide a disasterclass). However I think this is not the issue you were interested in in your comment.

    I gladly admit, that
    – putting the best players of each position in the 4-2-3-1 (4-2-1-3) formation together doesn’t automatically mean that it will certainly become the strongest team, even for the very formation as (current) player chemistries and partner synergies were not taken into consideration at all
    – after Gabriel’s red card, Saka is the only reasonable contender for player of the (half) season; he justified this with his consistent performances as well as the statistics (he leads our player rating chart at WhoScored). Yet I also honestly believe that he is a utility player who is still looking for his best position, and we have players who are better than him for every strict position (LB, LWB/LM, CM, AM, LW). So yes, controversial as it sounds I would leave him out from the A team’s starting line-up (but keep him on the bench to pressure the XI as well as for energetic supersub).
    – Something similar applies to Martinelli, with the sole difference that he has a known best position. I think he should be the natural heir to Aubameyang. Which – with my limited footballing experience and my nearly infinite wisdom – I would do the succession as follows: year 1: train together, apprentice plays in the same position in cup competitions as master, year 2: master is substituted by apprentice around the 60th minute, year 3: master and apprentice take turns in the starting line-up, share position minutes about 60 (A) – 40 (M), year 4: master is retired (moves to coaching or leave the club). Generally this should be year 2 already, but Martinelli’s long injury and the erratic Covid-related conditions makes it rather year 1/1.5. Nonteheless Auba has 2.5 more years with us, he is no longer marketable, cannot be treated like Mertesacker, and I don’t really see how they can play together with Gabi without destroying careers like Pepe or Nelson.

  • I forgot to add:
    Don’t get me wrong, I love Saka. He is probably the best young English player (tied with Sancho), better than Mount, Greenwood or even Foden. He has a great personality (both being a genuinely modest, friendly guy and having an infinite appetite to learn and develop) and I think he has a great future with us. So when I say he could be one of the reasons our season started on the wrong foot I have no malicious intent against Bukayo. (Yet I can be a cretin, just an unbiased one.) When we play with a back 3 Tierney always ends up being LCB, which is a terrible mistake in my opinion. Kieran should always play LB/LWB (he has immense flank/wing talent with some noticeable man-marking shortcomings) and Gabriel was born (and bought) to be a LCB, not the defense conductor. But when Auba starts the team sheet in LW and you are committed to start Saka, then the back 3/5 is just not working. So either move to a back 4 that can allow Tierney not playing as CB or leave Saka out of the starting line-up. I went for both, but that’s just me.

    I know how heretical it sounds to exclude Saka or Martinelli from the starting XI. But if we base/validate our judgement by our 2 late victories then we must leave Gabriel out, as his absence coincided with the boys turning the tides.

  • Morning all, Thank you Total that is a very thought provoking subject and without naming players here are my thoughts.

    For several years my major concern has been our right back position – it would be interesting to see the stats on how many goals that we have conceded while our right back has not made it back in time from an offensive thrust – way too many I fear.

    My other concern has been that we are missing a real “steel” backbone of a CF, CH and CB – we have bled far too many simple goals and at the other end we .lack the strength and height to take advantage of set pieces in the last quarter.

    I’m not suggesting that we rush out and buy four new players , even if we could or they were available – but I am suggesting a more methodical approach to make the changes in the next 2/3 transfer windows.

    We are blessed to have an abundance of young skillful players that will become the main part of our future squads – but I cannot see amongst them the steel that I believe is missing.

  • Mikel Arteta: Arsenal manager says offloading players is January priority

    Arsenal will prioritise offloading players in the January transfer window, says manager Mikel Arteta.

    Midfielder Mesut Ozil, whose deal expires in summer 2021, has been left out of the Gunners’ Premier League and Europa League squads this season.

    Defenders Shkodran Mustafi and Sead Kolasinac have barely featured in the league in 2020-21.

    “We cannot sustain the numbers that we have in certain positions,” said Arteta.

    “There are some players that are going to go on loan and going to leave, and that is the priority.

    “Then we will see if we have the right opportunity in the positions where we need some more help.”

    Who could be on the move in January?

    When asked about reports that Bosnia-Herzegovina left-back Kolasinac is close to a return to former club Schalke,

    Arteta said: “”The numbers we have in the squad at the moment are really big, but we cannot confirm anything yet.”

    Arsenal have three first-team players out on loan – centre-back Konstantinos Mavropanos is at Stuttgart, while midfielders Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi are at Atletico Madrid and Hertha Berlin respectively.

    The Gunners are 13th in the Premier League after 16 games, following back-to-back victories over Brighton and Chelsea that ended a run of seven matches without a win.

    They host 19th-placed West Bromwich Albion on 2 January (20:00 GMT kick-off).

  • I would like to take this opportunity to wish all Bkers all the very best for a very Happy and Healthy 2021. Personally I very happy that 2020 is almost behind us.

  • Total, I had an issue with my cab and didn’t want to risk it, also the info I got from people I know who work in Town convinced me to give it a miss, not least with this reported new strain around…

    I’m out today, New Years Eve and all that so hopefully a few people will take the chance to socially distance together.

    The sharp rise in WuFlu cases does make me wonder why if it’s so bad why haven’t the Nightingale Hospitals re opened?

  • Very apt news – Lewis Hamilton is to receive a knighthood – Arise Sir Lewis it’s a well deserved honour.

  • I’ll go by PB’s “A-B” teams presentation …
    ONE buy, and one only; here’s the 2021-2022 Mighty Arsenal (BKesque exclusive) – I hope we won’t buy anyone during the upcoming transfer window:
    A (4-2-3-1)
    Partey- CAMAVINGA
    A (3-4-2-1)

    B (4-2-3-1)
    B (3-4-2-1)

    Try to have some fun tonight; here’s my favorite midnight song:

    Stay safe, you who live on the other side of the Channel; the numbers coming up from there are frightening …
    A very Happy New year to all Arsenal fans, and to all BKers in particular

  • Camavinga it is and a young and untested Balogun, LeG. Very refreshing. I don’t know the former but you make a big shout for him, capital letters and all! 🙂

  • Rarely has a young gun impressed me as much as Folarin, TA – and believe me, i like Eddie a lot, for example – but to me Fo’s the real thing: movement, skill, gifted with both feet, grinta, hold-up play, cold-bloodedness in the box (and the way he preyed upon pépé’s pass to score the 4th against dundalk), vision, confidence, pace and power; I do believe he has the whole package … He’s the only signing i’m looking forward to, atm, I wonder what the club’s waiting for; it’s starting to worry me a lot, actually

  • Some believe in the young talent, LeG, and I love the passion.

    Re a new contract and your question at the end… a contract is always signed by all parties involved and Balogun may simply have decided that he wants to go somewhere else next… And if so there is nothing the club can do (not that I consider the club highly competent re this, though)

  • Arsenal defender Sead Kolasinac is joining Schalke on loan for the rest of the season after Gunners boss Mikel Arteta said offloading players was the January transfer window “priority”.

    Bosnia-Herzegovina left-back Kolasinac, 27, began his career with the German side before moving to Arsenal in 2017.

    “We cannot sustain the numbers we have in certain positions,” Arteta had said earlier on Thursday.

  • Yep, TA, it looks like Folarin (and his agent/advisers/parents/relatives??) are tough nuts to crack, but tricky signings are what the fat cats who deal with that sort of things are (very well) paid for, don’t you think? And if they can’t convince a lad who’s been with us ever since he was 8, to stay with us, well yes, their competence looks very questionable to me.
    Enjoy the last night of that (mainly for the wrong reasons) never-to-be-forgotten year, say hi for me to your family, and … congrats for the new site!!

  • Interesting mental exercise TA.
    40M in any currency isn’t very much these days. While I agree on the need to upgrade at RB– I think I’d rather put that amount into a creative midfielder or a CF that can score in more than one fashion. If it’s just one, at 40M– you gotta’ be right. Seems like it’s always easier to blend in a new midfielder in the PL– than it is to have a striker come in and pay off immediately.

    But since you’re thinking in terms of a RB? And while it appears that Bellerin paired with Saka on the right seems to be creating a chemical bond– I’d be willing to make a go of parting with Bellerin, if Brighton were willing to part with Tariq Lamptey. An incoming RB has to be PL-ready. And the cash has to be a wash.

    At CAM– that’s going to be a hard row to hoe– to prise away a name player in January at 40M. Also, don’t want to stunt what looks to be a leap forward with Emile Smith Rowe’s recent performances. What I’d want is an incoming loan through to season’s end perhaps. Someone with top-level experience. A player to share that spot– while ensuring that ESR gets all the minutes he’s able to play– at the level he’s at currently. Real’s Isco is in that sphere– and rumored to be available. Arsenal with Arteta seems a good situ for him to land in.

    The striker part is trickier than the other two. Bringing in one from outside the PL is a risk. Look at Timo Werner or Fabio Silva. Werner may come good– or go the way of Roberto Saldado. Silva, replacing the injured Raul Jimenez– has but one goal in 11 apps. Then, with Arsenal’s recent run of play– we may find our current core of goalscorers with better service and the type of chances they require to be dangerous. Lacazette seems re-energized– and a rusty Auba came so close to a signature goal at Brighton. Might be that the answer to a Plan B guy is in our midst in Falorin Balogun. Would like to see him getting more minutes up front in EL matches in the New Year. If– we can resign him.

    All realistic scenarios. All refraining from spending any of that 40M.


  • JW, you are very resourceful. I like Lamptey too and I think he is in demand.

    How long have we been linked with h Isco for? Not as keen but happy to try it. And I like your reasoning a lot.

  • Jnyc, re Elneny.
    I think we are on the same page.

    Mo is a great guy. He is modest, happy to support the youngsters, works really hard, he always smiles (different from Auba, who always jokes around, Elneny is just simply calm and happy), he doesn’t fight hard for maximizing his minutes as his international career is safe: he is just the perfect person to be around.

    He is simply just not an attack-minded footballer. At all. According to his TransferMarkt stats he provides an assist every 15 games, which looks every 18 games if we narrow down his career to England. Unlike Xhaka and Ceballos, who also don’t have many assist, Mo doesn’t aim for key passes either. But there is nothing wrong with that. We know it, he knows that, Arteta knows it too.

    Elneny showed against Liverpool (C. Shield), Manchester United and Chelsea that he is really useful against teams of superior midfield. His short, crisp passes, important tackles and timely interceptions are vital when playing against strong engines, but next to useless against teams who defend with many players and practically uninterested in ball possession. Just like a portable gas stove is so valuable when you go for outdoor camping, but probably a bad choice when you invite family and friends for a garden barbecue.
    He clearly deserves his place in the squad, but that doesn’t mean he is supposed to start regardless of the opponent and the venue.

  • TA, I just realized that besides the knowledgeable and constructive core team here at BK I also prefer discussing Arsenal-related ideas, concepts and opinions on your blog, because in a sports pub I would be lynched after the 3rd sentence. 🙂

    Have a safe, calm, happy and healthy 2021, everyone!
    And as always, COYRRG!

  • Hey, TA. I had to click on other posts, repeatedly before I realized you had changed/upgraded your WP background for the site. Talk about a “Total” makeover (see what I did there? Of course, it was too obvious). Good job!

    I’d have to go straight to issuing my score predictions for GN5’s selection for the week (did you miss the midweek fixtures, GN5?):

    Man Utd vs Aston Villa D
    Tottenham vs Leeds Utd. H
    West Brom vs Arsenal. A
    Newcastle Utd vs Leicester. D
    Chelsea vs Man City. D (1 – 2)
    Dortmund vs Wolfsburg H

  • Now, to the topic, TA. A fine topic to put out there, it must be said. I kind of like your core line up for 2021 but with a tweak at the back, starting with RB. Like you, I am not sure what’s up with Bellerin (been playing much better the last two games, it must be said; I put it down to the reported interest from Barca) in recent times, so I agree we need an upgrade. As I don’t know the Ajax RB proposed and as I am not certain what the owners intend to do in the TW, I’d stay with what we have and go with Ainsley Maitland-Niles. Time he held on to a role and quit the “utility player” role.

    Also, I suggest Gabriel (with Luis) be made to earn back his place, not walk into the team, after his self isolation. With the pairing of Holding and Mari proving a steady one, so far, why fix it? I agree with a pairing from Holding, Gabriel, Luis and Mari; Mari – Gabriel, looking the likelier picks, even though I know Arteta seems to like Holding; and so do you. 😁

    The rest of the team picks itself, as you outlined; I would hope to see a bit more of Nelson in the new year. He can help to give Saka much needed rest. And, yes, with the trio of Saka, Martinelli and ESR behind a sole striker, it’s got to be one of Laca or Auba, not both. I’d go with Laca because of his better hold up play and how suited he is for the offensive provocation the referenced trio can cause, playing off him (Laca). Auba can always come on as a sub. I feel he would be more prolific coming on from the bench, hungry. Of course, there will be games where he starts and others when both may start/play, if we are chasing a game or depending on the opposition.

  • Good shout for AMN, Eris. He is my man for midfield, but he is also good as right back.

    Auba as supersup makes real sense, with say one three starts.

  • TA, I forgot to pick a player? I want Buendia. Enough taking chances with guys who might not be able to handle England.

    Also I have to admit I haven’t been that impressed with AMN passing. You and I have pushed to see him in midfield. Love how he carries the ball though.

    Lewis Hamilton, been his biggest fan since the first year with McClaren against Alonso. He lost me this year.
    ………He should take a lesson from an authentic hero,…
    a humble humanitarian… Non-political and caring. Not a fake..,,,,
    Marcus Rashford. That kid, so young, truly cares about people and his club.

    Kev, have a great holiday, however you decide celebrate. Same to the whole gang here.

  • Gooneris I only choose weekend games as believe it would be too difficult to get all the predictions in if the games were only days apart.

  • I checked out Mazraoui, TA. He seems like a decent RB, no doubt about that.

    The reasons I would not sign a player for this position are:
    – I’m naively hoping that Bellerin can turn his career around and fulfills his destiny to become the PL’s best RB
    – We are insanely equipped at right back: Bellerin, Soares, Maitland-Niles, and most of all Chambers, who also has many promising years ahead of him
    – There are some youngsters in the queue; many believes that Jordi Osei-Tutu (22, on loan to Cardiff City) deserves a chance – maybe in the pre-season – before his future gets decided, Jeorge Bird sings hymn about Ryan Alebiosu (19, Arsenal U23), and there is Brooke Norton-Cuffy (16, Arsenal U18) who progresses in a noticeable speed playing 5 times for the U23 team this season already.

    Bellerin is back to the Spanish national team (played 90 minutes against the Netherlands and sat on the bench against Switzerland both in mid-November), and if it is true that Koeman is seriously interested in signing him, then we might find ourselves in an awkward situation where Hector is good enough to play for Barcelona, but not good enough (needs upgrade) to start for Arsenal. 🙂

  • J, Buendia it is for you. Re Rashford, he is indeed brilliant on and off the pitch. He is so grounded and wise for such a young lad. Lewis finds this harder but his heart is in the right place.

  • Cheers PB, none of those you mention bring what Tierney does, and that is what we need on the right.

    Barca bought many a Gunner but other than TH nobody was a success (and I think Hector is wary of this).

  • A Safe & Happy New Year to all BKers. To stay safe the whole year through.
    Younger days– I’d be out and about celebrating a birthday– an enchanted night amidst The World’s Biggest Party!
    Simpler, happier times. 🙂


  • Cheers Total, I am very careful and very aware, 31 years of this game teaches you to be on your guard.

    It’s been dead in London today/tonight, 4 jobs in almost 11 hours tells its own tale but still upper lip and all that malarkey.

    Happy New Year to you Frank, thanks for all the great content and a civilised blog, which is looking very spick n span now I must say.

    You all stay healthy up there among all those Jocks.

    Thanks for all your interesting pre match posts GN5, stay safe over there in the icy north and Happy New Year to you and yours.

    And to all you other geezers from across the globe and especially to my ol’ mucker in the Big Apple, have a Happy New Year…

  • Wow sorry to hear that, Kev. Never thought that would be possible on NY eve.

    Stay strong buddie, also this will pass.

    Thanks for the kind words and a Happy and Healthy New Year to you too 🎆🎇🎆🎇

    Thanks for your great comments and posts this year.

  • Best wishes for the new year, all. Here’s hoping for a return to saner times, in good health and great rewards for our efforts.

    It was a tough year for most and not sure how much more of the uncertainty the world economy can take. Let’s hope it is resilient enough.

    All the best, lads.

  • Okay then, GN5. Got that and agree with your reasoning as I may have been guilty of late rendition of my predictions. 😀

    Just been able to go through the rest of the comments and it is infectious just reading the views put up here; all intended for the good of our dear club, in the face of the financial limitations we know about. I did go with an upgrade at RB but feel we can get this within. If it has to be just one new buy, I think what can definitely make us a better, more dangerous team is what we should opt for: a EPL-ready creative player who can dribble with the ball and is strong in possession with ability to chip in with goals. My No.1 pick will be Jack Grealish. At Villa, he gives defenders concern. At a club like Arsenal, he will certainly scare the pants off every defence we come up against. We need to have the fear factor back again and can use players who can provoke situations.

    A possible No.2 pick, less so, will be Wolves’ Pedro Neto or Daniel Podence. Players who think forward always and aren’t afraid to take on defenders while retaining possession as they enter dangerous areas, with eyes on other players’ movements. We don’t have enough of such players (only Saka and maybe, Nelson).

    When you watch Manchester United today, it is safe to say it is mainly the ball skills of Rashford and Fernandez that’s kept them taking points from bad situations . They also have Martial who can provoke chaos with his dribbling and ball retention abilities, when in the opponents’ box.

    Now, I know we may have to shell out more than £40m for one of these names, so…..

    Hope everyone is having a good time (or rest) this beautiful first day of 2021.

  • Cheers Eris, Grealish as a Gunner is a popular choice and I like your reasoning. You may have overlooked Tierney who also brings the ball forward and finds team mates in space. Tierney on the left with Martinelli and Saka on the left with a beast of a right back would do it for me. But I would not say no to Grealish of course.

  • The three things I would do before we buy anyone would be-
    Make Tierminator club captain as his attitude and performance deserve it. I am also not a fan of strikers as captain as they don’t see enough of the game to control it.
    Cancel ceballos loan as his wages could be put to better use now we have ESR, Partey and elneny.
    Start integrating Saliba into the defence and stop playing/benching mustafi as he is a waste of a spot.
    I would then stick with the 4-2-3-1 lineup with Leno, Bellerin, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney, Xhaka, Partey, Saka, Laca, Martinelli, Auba
    Hoping that by moving laca to the 10 spot we can utilize his hold up play and he can still take some long range efforts. If I had to have an upgrade somewhere it would probably be right back as I don’t feel bellerin is any better now then when he burst onto the scene. I would get Ricardo Pereira from Leicester because he is a fantastic all round wing back/right back.

  • Good morning all,

    For many personal reasons and due to covid-19 that has restricted our lives and taken so many people prematurely I’m very happy to say goodbye to 2020 and I hold great hopes for 2021.

    I sincerely wish you all a wonderful 2021 and may you all be Happy and Healthy .

    PS: Lets hope that Arsenal have turned the corner.

  • Matt, that is comment I of course really like. 🙂

    There is a lot to say for playing Laca behind Auba with both Martinelli and Saka next to him. ESR has been very impressive but he does not (yet) have the goal threat of Laca. The Frenchman may not be as a good a midfielder but he offers the same workrate and quick passing as young Emile.

    Your right back suggestion is one I like too.

  • Matt, I agree with the captain recommendation. Tierney would deserve it (albeit joined only 1,5 years ago), but I would give it to Xhaka, if he stays to be a starter in most games.
    I support your idea on Saliba, especially if we can reduce the defenders by 3-4. Kolasinac is already on loan, Sokratis should be sold in the winter, so if we manage to find Mustafi another team then let Saliba come. Otherwise it will be too crowded in the back (Luiz, Holding, Chambers, Mari, Mustafi, Gabriel) so William would be better off wit a proper loan.

    There is some time to experiment with Lacazette at #10, but I don’t get my hopes up. I’m not sure his passing skills are that crisp, but I hope he will prove me wrong.
    I think Arteta’s dilemma will be to select Auba, Laca or both, but as long as Martinelli and Saka are undropable, he will struggle to keep them both in the line-up. But I would be interested in trying Auba up front and a Martinelli-Lacazette-Saka trio behind him… Or a Martinelli-Lacazette-Pepe – that would be 4 strikers in one team. 🙂

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