- Yaya Sanogo
With news that Welbeck would likely not feature against Dortmund due to injury, one would likely speculate that one of Lukas Podolski or Joel Campbell would be given the nod to lead the line since Giroud was also not registered for the Group Stages. Well, that ‘one’ surely doesn’t know the amount of faith Wenger has in Yaya Sanogo who looks set to be the one to feed off Alexis and Alex tonight. His inspirational display for the French U-21s, scoring twice in a victory over the Gareth Southgate’s charges would have added more belief in Wenger of his abilities and having played him 10 months ago at home to Bayern, Sanogo would be relishing another German opposition tonight. Can he finally score a competitive goal and do the Sanogo dance?
- Emiliano Martinez
When he congratulated Hector Bellerin on his impending debut the morning before that game at Dortmund, little did he know that he’d have to be involved in two big Champions League games in the near future. With the second now coming immediately after his rushed Premier League debut against United at the weekend, young Emi Martinez will be looking to put in a solid performance in his first Champions League game at the Emirates. The threat of Immobile, Aubameyang and Mkhitarayan means the 22-year old will have to be at his very best to keep us secure at the back, and if he does have a very good game today, who knows what could become of Szczesny when he returns.
- Laurent Koscielny
Absent from the squad since the defeat at Chelsea, Koscielny will certainly walk straight back into the team today, helped on one hand by Wenger’s negligence in signing a third choice center back (Chambers was signed as second choice right back), and the fact that Nacho Monreal will never be a center back. He’s not quite been at his best this season, with injuries concerns at different stages of the season. With all the talk of the dire need of a rival center back to both he and Per, Kos will be looking to remind all gooners what good partnership he had with his German mate last year, and that rather than fade, they are only going to get better together.
- Aaron Ramsey
Ramsey had his best game of the season against United at the weekend and was visibly disappointed to be subbed off with some 10 minutes still to play. As much as every team needs as many goal scorers as possible, the work of winning the ball and tracking opposition players is so demanding a role that it must not have its allotted energy shared with other dealings. The goals will come for Aaron, but he would need to keep to his basic duties of helping the team get back the ball and keep it, a role which he is really so good at.
- Lukas Podolski
The German International has not made secret his frustration at not having regular playing time in the Arsenal squad this season, threatening fire, hail and brimstone in the winter if nothing changes. He’s made three substitute appearances in the four previous Champions League game, netting that last-gasp winner at Anderlecht and though Wenger’s decision to bring him on in the return fixture was largely criticized, it is very likely that he will still get minutes today. Neither Wenger nor Podolski can really be blamed for the limits to his involvement as we clearly have better players in his position(s) and if he thinks that’s a fallacy, he must make use of as much – or little – as he will get today.
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