Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is ruled out while Gabriel Magalhaes and Alexandre Lacazette should start when Arsenal face Manchester City in the Carabao Cup.
Arsenal will be aiming to advance to the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup when they lock horns with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City at the Emirates in the last-eight stages on Tuesday night.
Ahead of the game, manager Mikel Arteta has been dealt with a major blow as captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been ruled out of the contest due to a calf problem that led him to miss the weekend Premier League clash against Everton.
Speaking in his pre-match presser, the Arsenal head coach said, “Auba is not fit for tomorrow, that’s for sure. He won’t be playing tomorrow so we will see who is available because we have a few doubts as well in other positions. He will have another scan in the next few days and we will see how quickly we can get him back in the team.”
🗞 A fresh update on Auba's availability
Read our latest team news ahead of tomorrow's game 👇
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) December 21, 2020
Apart from Aubameyang, Arsenal will also be without the services of marquee summer signing Thomas Partey, who is sidelined with a hamstring injury. In addition, Granit Xhaka misses out as well, as he serves the last of his three-match suspension.
But, there is some boost for Arteta, with Gabriel Magalhaes returning from his one-match ban. The Brazilian should walk right back into the starting XI, starting at the centre of the three-man backline for Arsenal. He ought to be flanked by Rob Holding and Kieran Tierney, with the trio shielding Bernd Leno in goal.
Hector Bellerin missed out against Everton and should be reinstated to the starting XI on Tuesday, with the Spaniard replacing Ainsley Maitland-Niles at right wing-back while the ever-impressive Bukayo Saka continues on the opposite flank.
In the absence of Xhaka and Partey, Mohamed Elneny should once again start in the middle of the park. However, there could be a change of partners for the Egyptian, with Dani Ceballos set to make way for Joe Willock against Manchester City.
Nicolas Pepe, who scored at the weekend, should be retained on the right flank, as his pace could come in handy against a Manchester City side that likes to play a high backline.
The left flank poses a selection dilemma for Arteta, with Aubameyang ruled out. Willian was terribly poor last time out against Everton while Gabriel Martinelli has only recently recovered from a long-term injury, making his comeback as a substitute at the weekend. So, Arteta is likely to continue to ease him back into action.
This should open up a window of opportunity for academy product Reiss Nelson, who has recovered from a head injury he picked up during training. Eddie Nketiah started as the centre-forward last time out, but, in all likelihood, should make way for the more experienced Alexandre Lacazette for the quarter-finals.
Arsenal Predicted XI: Leno; Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Bellerin, Willock, Elneny, Saka; Pepe, Lacazette, Nelson