Arsenal fans have been reacting to Mikel Arteta’s starting XI for tonight’s Europa League clash.
Arsenal progressed against Olympiacos in the last round, while Slavia Prague defeated Rangers to reach this stage of the competition.
Arteta‘s men come into this game on the back of a disappointing performance and defeat at the hands of Liverpool last time out, losing 3-0 in the Premie League, and they will be looking to step things up tonight.
The Europa League could be the Gunners’ best hope of qualifying for Europe ahead of next season with their chances of qualifying through the Premier League now looking unlikely.
Ahead of the all-important first leg, Arteta has selected his starting XI and there is a noticeable absentee with Martin Odegaard not returning on time from his ankle injury to feature in the squad.
The Gunners will be out for around four-to-six weeks, meaning Cedric Soares starts on one side with Hector Bellerin on the other, and Bukayo Saka has returned on time to start.
There’s also a huge call in that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been left on the bench amid a drop in form with Alexandre Lacazette, Willian and Emile Smith Rowe all starting.
Here’s what Arsenal fans have had to say about the team, and there’s particular frustration about Gabriel Martinelli only earning a spot on the bench.
@Itz_troi – “Just play martinelli, I don’t want to see Willian in the team.”
@Bryoshavin – “Also FREE MARTINELLI.”
@Teestride – “Why cant Martinelli just start?.”
@AFC_Prab_12 – “Good lineup but rather have Martinelli on RW.”
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@EdWalker2017 – “What does martinelli need to do to earn a start? The guys an absolute baller.”
@Corcc11 – “Aubameyang dropped. Rightly so.”
@DapperGooner – “Right call to drop Auba.”
Starting XI in full : Leno; Bellerin, Holding, Gabriel, Cedric; Partey, Xhaka; Smith Rowe; Saka, Willian, Lacazette.