Expected Arsenal lineup (4-2-3-1) vs PSG, Alexis, Walcott out and more


Arsenal will host Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Wednesday night knowing that a win would guarantee them the top spot in the group standings.

Arsene Wenger’s side have lost out in the round of 16 in the last six seasons, and this makes the game with Les Parisiens all too crucial as they seek to avoid the big boys in the knock-out stage.

Formation: 4-2-3-1

Wenger has rarely experimented with his tactical formation over the years, and it is highly unlikely he will change the club’s style of play in midweek.

Goalkeeper:

Colombian international David Ospina has pulled out a string of stunning saves in the Champions League this term, and this has warded off some of the fears the Gunners’ faithful had over him between the sticks.

Defence:

In-form right-back Hector Bellerin is ruled out for the best part of a month with an ankle problem, and this will see Carl Jenkinson once again deputize in his place.

Laurent Koscielny and Shkodran Mustafi are deemed the best centre-back partnership in the Premier League (for now), but their credentials will be tested against Les Parisiens, who clearly outplayed the Gunners in the 1-1 reverse in September.

Kieran Gibbs has been earning his fair share of game time in Europe this season, but there are still doubts whether he would start ahead of Nacho Monreal, given the high intensity likely to be displayed by the French champions.

Midfield:

Mohamed Elneny is expected to be benched for the encounter with Granit Xhaka set to accompany Francis Coquelin in the heart of the defence.

Aaron Ramsey made his first league start since August at Old Trafford last weekend, and he could take on the right-wing position with Theo Walcott doubtful for the clash. Walcott is expecting the birth of his second child, and it is believed that Wenger could exclude the Englishman from his squad.

In the number ’10’ role would be Mesut Ozil. The German did not show up against Manchester United. Questions have been raised over the German’s influence in the big games, and the World Cup winner will seek to prove his doubters wrong in midweek.

Alex Iwobi will take up the left-wing role for the Gunners having not played a part in the 1-1 draw at Manchester United on Saturday.

Striker:

Alexis Sanchez played the full 90 minutes against the Red Devils despite having his right thigh tightly strapped. The Chilean ace is nursing a minor hamstring niggle, and this will urge Wenger to drop him to the bench at best.

Olivier Giroud has proved to be an effective ‘plan B’ for Wenger in the league, but this is something the Frenchman is not happy about. The 30-year-old wants to feature for the Gunners on a regular basis, and the game against Paris Saint-Germain could be one he could revel in following his red-card incident in the reverse fixture.


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