Arsenal will take on reigning La Liga Champions Barcelona at Camp Nou on Sunday for the Joan Gamper Trophy.
The Gunners’ attack and midfield look competitive as Unai Emery has plenty of options to choose from, but the defence is still a cause of concern.
Arsenal are expected to name a strong starting lineup against Barca as they will attempt to boost their morale before they face Newcastle United on 11th August in their first Premier League fixture.
Arsenal team news
Lucas Torreira and Mohamed Elneny are back following their national duties, and the duo are in line for a place in the squad against the Spanish giants.
Laurent Koscielny’s stand-off with the club’s management continues and it is highly likely that the veteran central defender will leave the club.
Alexandre Lacazette could return after recovering from a sprained ankle in his club’s defeat to Lyon, though he might not be rushed into starting lineup.
Rob Holding, Emile Smith Rowe, Hector Bellerin and Konstantinos Mavropanos are still sidelined. However, Daniel Ceballos might feature following his omission against Angers.
Sead Kolasinac and Mesut Ozil missed the matches against Lyon and Angers after being targeted in an attempted car-jacking last week, and the two are expected to be back.
It is to be seen whether the Gunners’ record-signing Nicolas Pepe features or not following his £72million move from the ranks of Ligue 1 outfit Lille.
Arsenal predicted lineup vs Barcelona (4-3-3)
Bernd Leno is expected to start under the bar. The German shot-stopper is Arsenal’s undisputed number 1 and could be called into action quite a few times next season considering the Gunners’ weak defence.
The Sokratis and Calum Chambers combination might be used against Barcelona. Emery is still assessing his defensive options, and it will be a great chance for Chambers to show his mettle by performing well against the big side.
Nacho Monreal and Ainsley Maitland-Niles could get the nod from Emery to start as the full-backs.
Swiss international Granit Xhaka might feature in the deepest position to control the tempo of the game and recycle possession.
Real Madrid loanee Ceballos will add the much-needed creative spark in the middle of the park alongside Joe Willock.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is likely to lead the line against Ernesto Valverde’s troops. Meanwhile, Reiss Nelson and Henrikh Mkhitaryan might feature on the wings to inject a bit of pace and quality to the attack.