Arsenal are at the Emirates Stadium for Sunday’s Premier League encounter against Crystal Palace. The Gunners suffered a disappointing 1-0 defeat to Sheffield United in the league on Monday night but they made a comeback with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Vitoria in the Europa League.
The north London giants were second best for most of that encounter but they eventually sealed the victory after heroics from Nicolas Pepe off the bench. The club’s record signing scored through two stunning free-kicks during the final quarter of the game.
Gunners boss Unai Emery has preferred to stick with a settled defensive formation and no changes are likely from recent league games. Bernd Leno will definitely start in goal with Calum Chambers, David Luiz, Sokratis and Sead Kolasinac making up the defence.
Likewise in the midfield, Granit Xhaka and Matteo Guendouzi are very much constants under Emery and the one change could happen with Joe Willock, who has not been at his best in recent games. He could be replaced by Dani Ceballos in the advanced midfield position.
In the attack, Unai Emery has the opportunity to play at full strength with Alexandre Lacazette returning from an ankle problem. The Frenchman played through more than an hour in the Europa League in midweek without any concern and he should be ready for his first league start since early September.
We are fancying him to lead the attack with Nicolas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the flanks. Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli have both impressed when offered the opportunities to start, but Emery may resort to the senior combination for this game.
Surprisingly, the trio of Pepe, Aubameyang and Lacazette have started just one game together this term. That was during the north London derby against Spurs where the latter was substituted after the hour mark with an ankle concern, which eventually kept him out of action for around six weeks.
How Arsenal could line up vs Crystal Palace
Predicted Arsenal Lineup (4-2-3-1): Bernd Leno, Calum Chambers, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, David Luiz, Sead Kolasinac, Matteo Guendouzi, Granit Xhaka, Dani Ceballos, Nicolas Pepe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette