Mikel Arteta makes five changes, ‘electric’ 23-year-old gets rare chance: Arsenal’s predicted XI vs Lens
After their dominant win against Bournemouth yesterday, Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal now face a tough away trip to Lens on Tuesday.
And this week will prove a difficult balancing act for Arteta with a trip to Manchester City also weighing heavily on the mind.
So with that considered, Arsenal Insider are predicting that Arsenal will make five changes to the side that won 4-0 on Saturday.
We think Reiss Nelson will headline the changes after some excellent cameos of late.
The ‘electric’ winger was in fine form against Brentford last week and now deserves a chance to start in Europe’s biggest competition.
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Given that Declan Rice and William Saliba were both tight calls for the trip to Bournemouth, they are two key players who may not be risked with a visit from Pep to come.
Moreover, that would also cast Bukayo Saka’s place in doubt against Lens, but we think Arteta will keep him in his Arsenal side.
Saka has proven a remarkable record of availability in recent years, and should be able to shrug off some discomfort from Saturday.
Arteta is likely to restore Ramsdale in net for Arsenal against Lens
Although David Raya is playing incredibly well, Aaron Ramsdale may have earned himself another cup start after his heroics against Brentford.
The 25-year-old was in top form and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Arteta rewarded him with a start in the Champions League.
Another player who impressed in that game, Takehiro Tomiyasu, should come into the side.
Saliba could need a rest as mentioned and Arteta should play Tomiyasu centrally for Arsenal against Lens.
The Japan international starred in the position in midweek and is playing his best football there.
Jorginho and Fabio Vieira are two obvious names to rotate in with the coming weekend in mind.
And Eddie Nketiah shouldn’t have done his chances any harm with an energetic showing down on the south coast.
Arsenal Insider’s predicted XI: Ramsdale; White, Tomiyasu, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Jorginho, Odegaard, Vieira; Saka, Nketiah, Nelson.