Arsenal team news: Expected XI vs Leicester – Arteta faces Partey, Aubameyang, Saka calls


Arsenal will hope to return to the top 10 of the Premier League by downing third-placed Leicester at the King Power Stadium today. The Gunners can at least temporarily leapfrog rivals Tottenham with three points against the Foxes, who are looking to jump into second. Arsenal have only won one of their last five meetings with Leicester but were victorious at this venue in the Carabao Cup back in September. Express Sport looks at how Mikel Arteta’s men could line up in the Midlands.

Goalkeeper: Leno

Bernd Leno will keep his spot in the starting line-up between the sticks as he seeks a first clean sheet since January 30.

The German kept five shut-outs in six games between December 29 and the draw with Manchester United at the end of January but has leaked five in three since then.

Mat Ryan was signed on loan from Brighton in January but the Australian is no match for Leno, although he was solid when stepping in for the suspended No 1 against Aston Villa recently.

Defence: Cedric, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney

With Hector Bellerin starting the loss to Manchester United and the win over Benfica, Cedric Soares could return to the starting line-up here at right-back.

Kieran Tierney will start at left-back having only returned to the side against City after missing the previous five league games with a knee problem.

In central defence, Gabriel Magalhaes and Pablo Mari will compete for the left-sided spot but it could be the summer signing who lines up in central defence against Leicester.

Rob Holding could return to the team after a head injury last weekend forced him to miss the 3-2 European win in Greece on Thursday night.

He has featured in all of Arsenal’s last 18 league matches, albeit only off the bench against Leeds earlier this month, and is the only real fitness doubt bar potentially fatigued players.

David Luiz partnered Gabriel on that occasion while Holding started next to Mari last time out against City.

Midfield: Partey, Xhaka

Partey has been ravaged by injuries since joining from Atletico Madrid in the summer but came off the bench for the final half-an-hour against Benfica.

While he only passed a late fitness test to involved, he should start here.

Partey is expected to displace Dani Ceballos after his dire midweek display.

Granit Xhaka should partner the Ghanaian in the centre of midfield with Mohamed Elneny an option to replace either of the duo.

Nicolas Pepe is then likely to start on the left-hand side over Willian while Bukayo Saka’s form means he should start on the right.

Saka notched two assists against Benfica and also scored the away goal in the previous leg and has developed into Arsenal’s most important player, even over Aubameyang.

Though Gabriel Martinelli will be pushing for more starts, Saka is simply undroppable.

Arsenal predicted XI vs Leicester (4-2-3-1): Leno; Cedric, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Partey, Xhaka, Pepe, Smith Rowe, Saka; Aubameyang

Changes from Benfica XI: Cedric > Bellerin, Holding > Luiz, Partey > Ceballos, Pepe > Odegaard



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