Predicted Arsenal XI to face Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League
Arsenal stretched their winning streak to ten games in a row with an emphatic 3-1 comeback win over Leicester City on Monday.
The Gunners are currently top their group in the Europa League and are ahead of Sporting Lisbon on goal difference.
The Portuguese giants have also picked up six points from their first two games and this fixture might well decide who finishes at the top of the group.
The game promises to be one of the most evenly-matched encounters of the group stages and fireworks will fly when Unai Emery’s men visit Portugal to face Sporting Lisbon on Thursday.
Emery has provided his fringe players with game time in the Europa League and he should do the same this time around as well.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Aaron Ramsey and Matteo Guendouzi should start after coming off the bench against Leicester City.
Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac missed Monday’s game due to minor hamstring issues but they could feature in the matchday squad.
Sokratis did not feature on Monday but should return to the line-up for Thursday’s game. Meanwhile, Laurent Koscielny, who was sidelined due to a long-term Achilles injury, is back to training but might not be rushed back into action.
Manager: Unai Emery
Bernd Leno (GK)
He made a couple of good saves against Leicester and should retain his place in the line-up as Petr Cech is yet to regain full fitness.
Stephan Lichtsteiner (RB)
The veteran played as a left-back on Monday but should return to his familiar position for Thursday’s game.
Rob Holding (CB)
He wasn’t particularly good against Leicester and was lucky to get away with a handball inside the box but he must retain his place.
Thursday’s Europa League fixture might be the right time to ease him back into action following his ankle injury.
Nacho Monreal (LB)
Sead Kolasinac hasn’t had much play time this season and Emery should field the Spaniard in the starting line-up for the toughest game of the group stages.
Matteo Guendouzi (CDM)
The youngster looked fairly composed and Emery should hand him a start on Thursday to keep Lucas Torreira fresh for Sunday’s Premier League tie.
Mohamed Elneny (CDM)
The Egyptian did a good job in cutting out the attacks in the last game of the Europa League and could feature on Thursday ahead of Granit Xhaka, who deserves a break.
Emile Smith Rowe (RW)
The youngster scored his first senior goal for the club in the previous fixture of the Europa League and Emery should offer him another start.
Aaron Ramsey (CAM)
The Welshman has been in tremendous form this season and should start against Sporting Lisbon after coming off the bench on Monday.
Danny Welbeck (LW)
Alex Iwobi has been doing well in the Premier League and this will be a good opportunity for Emery to provide the Englishman with regular minutes.
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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ST)
He scored braces against Fulham and Leicester after coming off the bench and there is a chance that he might start on Thursday.