Mikel Arteta’s men will take short trip to the west London to kick-off their new Premier League campaign against newly-promoted side Brentford on Friday evening.
The Gunners are endured a disappointing campaign in the two previous season – finished 8th place but this season’s big difference will be the absence of European football of any kind, which should allow Mikel Arteta to focus solely on the Premier League.
In bid to break back into Champions League places at the end of the season, Arteta has already made three addition to his current squad, Nuno Tavares from Benfica, Albert Sambi Lokonga from Anderlecht and Ben White from Brighton while also confirmed that the club fans should expected more quality players arrive at Emirates before transfer window close later this month.
Meanwhile, Mikel Arteta’s men endured a mixed bag pre-season, starting with a loss to Hibernian. They returned from Scotland winless after mustering a draw to Rangers.
Their much-publicised trip to the United States got called off owing to positive coronavirus cases within their staff, and Arsenal played their next set of games at London Colney.
After winning back-to-back behind-closed-door games, Mikel Arteta’s side endured a tough phase in the Mind Series, co-hosted by Tottenham and Chelsea. Despite putting in decent performances against both neighbours, Arsenal took back-to-back defeats to finish their pre-season on a low.
Ahead of their trip to west London to take on Brentford, who ended the previous Championship season on a nine-game unbeaten home run, Mikel Arteta has received latest injury blow with his two frontman Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang likely to miss the clash alongside three first-team players.
It emerged on Friday afternoon that Aubameyang and Lacazette are not available for the game against Brentford because the pair are unwell.
Thomas Partey, on the other hand, will miss the clash after sustained an injury to ligaments in his right ankle during the friendly match against Chelsea while Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Magalheas also rule out for tonight match against Brentford.
But Gabriel Martinelli, who helping the Selecao to win gold at the Tokyo Olympics this summer, made first appearances alongside his team-mates at London Colney on Thursday morning after returns to Arsenal training session immediately after the Tokyo Olympics.
The 19-year-old highly-rated forward trained alongside his team-mates ahead of their kick-off match against Brentford and there’s possiblities for him to feature against the newly-promoted side since Lacazette and Aubameyang ruled out the action because of illness.
Bukayo Saka, Sambi Lokonga, Ben White alongside the rest of Mikel Arteta’s men look sharp at London Colney on Thursday, with the Gunners hope to start the season in decent form.
Moving on to predicted starting lineup, Mikel Arteta is likely to make some changes to the side that started last routine, with Ben White, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Smith-Rowe, Bukayo Saka Gabriel Martinelli and Granit Xhaka likely to get start against newly-promoted side.
It’s certain, Bernd Leno is expected to pick between the sticks for Arsenal on Friday evening after the German shot-stopper made some impressive save against Spurs last Sunday.
New centre-half signing Ben White, who produced solid display at the hearts of Gunners defence in their last two games, expected to play in back-four alongside Pablo Mari. Calum Chambers will play in right-back while Kieran Tierney will play left-back.
Replacing Partey is difficult for Mikel Arteta, although he should select Mohamed Elneny or new signing Albert Sambi Lokonga in place of the Ghanaian. The Belgian is likely to get the nod to partner up with Granit Xhaka after impressed against Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.
Emile Smith Rowe is a sure starter in attack, and Aubameyang and Lacazette latest injury problem, means Bukayo Saka, Nicolas Pepe will play on left wing and right-wing while Gabriel Martinelli is expected to lead the Gunners front-line.
Arsenal predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Leno; Chambers, White, Mari, Tierney; Lokonga, Xhaka; Pepe, Smith Rowe, Saka; Martinelli.
When is kick off? Friday 13 August, at 8:00PM
Where to watch Brentford vs Arsenal
TV channel: The match will be televised on Sky Sports Premier League and Main Event.
Live stream: Sky Sports subscribers will be able to watch the match online via the website or Sky Go app.