You could be forgiven for forgetting we were in the midst of a season.

Our FA Cup exit meant that we were allowed a breather. With the transfer window in full swing, it meant the spotlight on our dealings was more glaring than ever.

So, thank Dennis Bergkamp that we’ve got an actual match to play.

We take on Swansea at the Liberty Stadium. A lot of us Gooners will hold a fixture against the Swans with trepidation, but it isn’t in Wales where we usually succumb to a beating, it’s at The Emirates.

We haven’t lost at the Liberty since 2014, but at our home ground, it’s a different story, with the Swans winning the last two in London. So we can be thankful that we’re playing at Swansea.

It represents an away match that we could actually win for a change! In all seriousness, it may be nothing, but the air does seem a little lighter since Alexis left? The Chilean may have moved to a rival, but we’ve got a player who seems tailor-made for us, and the negativity that Sanchez may or may not have festered in the dressing room will have dissipated.

Is this a new dawn for our season? It really needs to be. Our league campaign is on the precipice, and we need a long run if we’re to put pressure on those above us and climb above them.

In terms of team, Nacho Monreal will be fit, and we should rejoice. The Spaniard has been on fire since he returned against Crystal Palace last week. Our defence should be settled, with Mustafi and Koscielny ready to partner Nacho. This should be the sure footing our team needs to fully commit men forward, but who will be in midfield?

Mohamed Elneny has been great in the last two games, and the Egyptian seems the perfect answer to our defensive midfield problems. Granit Xhaka is still excellent at distribution. but he at least doesn’t have to concentrate on protecting the back four. Jack Wilshere surely can’t be left out of the side, but with Aaron Ramsey fit and raring to go, it means if anyone puts a foot wrong, then the Welshman is ready to take their spot.

In attack, we may just see the debut of Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The Armenian is fit, and with Mesut Ozil and Alex Lacazette in attack alongside him, we could well see the start of a fantastic trio.

Swansea have the players to do damage, but since Carlos Carvajal took over, they’ve seemed far less brittle at the back. There hasn’t been any major changes, but their last match showed they must be taken seriously. The 1-0 win over Liverpool showed mettle and guts, and a little nous too.

It takes no small amount of effort to stifle the Reds - as we showed in both matches against them - and Swansea managed it to take all three points and breathe new life into their relegation battle.

We have our work cut out, they will no doubt stifle the midfield and hit on the counter, with Nathan Dyer recalled recently and bound to cause us problems. It is unclear whether we’ll play four or three at the back, but Sead Kolasinac was left out of our last game as Nacho filled the left sided void. The burly full back could well come back in this time, especially with Everton due in the weekend.

Points dropped here would put a huge dent into our ambitions, but it is just nice to have a game to look forward to.

Predicted lineup - Cech, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Bellerin, Kolasinac, Xhaka, Wilshere, Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Lacazette.

Predicted Scoreline - 2-1 to The Arsenal