Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Will Walcott and Arshavin be disappointed with Wenger's team selection?


Arsenal go into tonight's Premier League fixture with Stoke city without two first choice players.

Laurent Koscienly is ruled out with a back injury, whilst Robin van Persie misses the tie due to a hamstring problem. Both are due to be fit for Sunday's Carling Cup final.

It means Arsene Wenger will switch in Sebastien Squillaci in place of his countryman Koscielny alongside Johan Djourou at the heart of Arsenal's defence.

However, with van Persie absent, the Frenchman has a dilemma as who to play in the attacking positions.

Nicklas Bendtner has in recent weeks risen above Marouane Chamakh in the pecking order, with Arsene Wenger using the Danish striker as his first attacking change.

It has meant that the Moroccan has been forced to try and rediscover his form in the cup team with outings against Leyton Orient, Huddersfield Town and Leeds United in the FA Cup, a substitute appearance at Portland Road in the Carling Cup, along with a handful of substitute appearances in the Premier League.

You have to look back until December to find the last time Chamakh started in the league.

Bendtner on the other hand has seen his stock rise and was preferred to Chamakh by Wenger to take a place on the bench against Barcelona.

The Denmark international is the form player, with two goals in his last six appearances.

However I believe Wenger may start with them both tonight.

Bendtner has been used on the right hand side of the attacking three and that's where I believe he could start the game tonight.

Both players would add height to our team, something we'll need defensively given Stoke's aerial threat.

Whilst Theo Walcott could be recalled after missing Sunday's match through injury and Andrey Arshavin is coming back to his best form, I feel both could miss out.

Instead, I can see Wenger switching his attack around so that Chamakh leads the line, with Bendtner (right); Fabregas (centre) and Nasri (left) supporting the Moroccan.

My starting line up would be:

Arsenal (4-2-3-1)

Szczesny

Sagna - Djourou - Squillaci - Clichy

Song, Wilshere

Bendtner, Fabregas, Nasri

Chamakh

I'll post the official team line up once it's announced. Come on you Gooners!!!



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