Unai Emery will be desperate to get some points on the board after a pretty difficult start, as West Ham United come to The Emirates for a London derby.
Arsenal have lost 2-0 to champions Man City in the first game of this season, and then were unlucky not to grab at least a point in last week’s 3-2 loss at Stamford Bridge to Chelsea.
Now we welcome the Hammers to our home ground, and both side’s will be fighting tooth and nail for the points, as both are without points after the first two games.
West Ham also have a new manager like us, and have spent heavily in the transfer market to bolster their squad. Not only this, but the Hammers have a few familiar faces in their squad - none more so than fervent Gunner Jack Wilshere, who should be in the first team.
Lukasz Fabianski and Lucas Perez are also ex-Gunners, and The Emirates should have plenty of noise for this game, with plenty at stake.
Emery has no new injury concerns. Sead Kolasinac, Carl Jenkinson, Laurent Koscielny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles are all ruled out for a significant amount of time. This limits our defensive options as all are part of a prospective backline, so our four man defence from the Chelsea loss will most likely be the one that takes to the pitch against the Hammers - Hector Bellerin, Sokratis, Shkodran Mustafi and Nacho Monreal. Stephan Lichtsteiner, Konstandinos Mavropanos and Rob Holding remain in contention.
In midfield, Lucas Torreira will be pushing for a start, especially after Granit Xhaka was hooked at half time. The Uruguayan has been purchased as a specialist defensive midfielder, and his presence could let Guendouzi or Ramsey reap more damage.
In attack, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has had better days than he had last week, after missing some gilt-edged opportunities, for which he apologised on Instagram! The Gabon frontman should retain his place though, but the big question mark is whether Alexandre Lacazette will line up alongside him. Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Mesut Ozil should play, but Alex Iwobi will be pushing hard for a start after impressing against Chelsea.
West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini has a big job on his hands. How does he amass his talented side, with many new faces, into a team? Balbuena, Carlos Sanchez, Lucas Perez, Jack Wilshere, Felipe Anderson, Andriy Yarmolenko are just some of the names that have come to East London to play in the claret and blue, and now the hard work starts.
The Hammers were not exactly impressive in their last outing, a 2-1 loss to Bournemouth, but they do have the players to hurt us, and with the likes of Arnautovic, Felipe Anderson and a certain Jack Wilshere, they have the personnel to make something out of nothing if we switch off.
We will need a more cohesive and disciplined defensive showing than we have mustered so far too. Our suicidally high line versus Chelsea was our undoing on many occasions, and we need to be able to hold a line more effectively.
This game will have goals in it, and we have the firepower to break any defence, but can we score more than we ship?It’ll be a case of who has the slightly less brittle backline that wins this, and the loser will have the unenviable record of played three - lost three.
Both teams have new managerial regimes, and new players, but the Premier League is unforgiving and progress must be made quickly.
Emery will be well aware of this, and will ensure his Gunners side are more than ready to start their campaign properly.
Predicted Lineup - Cech, Bellerin, Mustafi, Sokratis, Monreal, Torreira, Guendouzi, Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang, Lacazette.
Predicted Scoreline - 3-1 to The Arsenal