Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard are in line to return when Arsenal take on Burnley at Turf Moor on Saturday.
Arsenal will be aiming to continue their recent upsurge in form when they lock horns with Burnley at Turf Moor in Saturday’s lunch-time Premier League kick-off. And, Mikel Arteta has a near full-strength squad at his disposal ahead of his side’s latest fixture.
The only concern for the Arsenal manager, albeit a major one, is pertaining Emile Smith Rowe. The young playmaker is battling to regain fitness after sustaining a muscle injury last week. And, as per the update in the club’s official team news section, Smith Rowe “will be assessed and checked regarding his availability ahead of Saturday’s match” against Burnley.
Arteta did provide an update on Smith Rowe during his pre-match press conference as well, saying, “Emile had a scan yesterday, it doesn’t look a significant injury but he was in discomfort. For the rest, hopefully everybody should be okay.”
Judging by Arteta’s comments, it does not look like Smith Rowe will be fit enough to start against Burnley even if he is able to make the matchday squad. With that in mind, it appears to be certain that Martin Odegaard will fill in for the 20-year-old on Saturday, reprising the no. 10 role in the 4-2-3-1 formation that the Arsenal boss prefers.
Changes are in order around Odegaard as well, with Bukayo Saka and captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang likely to be recalled in place of Willian and Nicolas Pepe in the wide areas. Aubameyang, Saka and Odegaard will play off of Alexandre Lacazette, who will lead the line for Arsenal against Burnley.
In midfield, Granit Xhaka is a certainty to feature in the double pivot, but the former Arsenal captain is set for a switch in partners. Thomas Partey should come in for Mohamed Elneny in the middle of the park, with the Ghanaian partnering Xhaka on Saturday.
As for the defence, Hector Bellerin is expected to replace Cedric Soares at right-back while Kieran Tierney is an automatic pick on the left. At the heart of the Arsenal defence, Gabriel Magalhaes ought to come in to replace Pablo Mari, with David Luiz being his central defensive partner, while Bernd Leno picks himself between the sticks.
Arsenal Predicted XI: Leno; Bellerin, Luiz, Gabriel, Tierney; Partey, Xhaka; Saka, Odegaard, Aubameyang; Lacazette