Arsenal return to Premier League action against Leeds United at Elland Road after a two-week break due to the international fixtures.
A humiliating 3-0 defeat against Aston Villa last time around means Arsenal are currently 11th in the Premier League table, having taken just 12 points from their eight games played so far. The Gunners boss Mikel Arteta knows all about his opposite manager Marcelo Bielsa and how he sets up his teams which make them a tough nut to crack. Arsenal head into this game knowing that they are in desperate need of a win to generate some sort of momentum after losing three of their last four league games.
Meanwhile, Leeds United are sitting in 15th having come off the back of two successive 4-1 defeats at the hands of Leicester City and Crystal Palace.
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Bielsa’s side have notched up some impressive performances in the league against Liverpool and Fulham but have been unlucky on several occasions. The Whites have won just one of their previous five outings and have a difficult set of fixtures ahead as they are set to face Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United in their next six games leading up to Christmas.
When and Where?
Venue: Elland Road.
Date: Sunday, 22nd November 2020
Time: 16:30 (GMT)
Mikel Arteta has struggled to find his preferred eleven so far, and his cause has not been helped with several players sustaining injuries.
Up front, the goals have dried up for attackers Aubameyang and Lacazette as both forwards have failed to score from open play in their last five league games.
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Arsenal suffered a double blow in the middle of the international schedule as both Sead Kolasinac and Mohamed Elneny both tested positive for Covid-19 while with their respective national teams. The Bosnian FA on 18th November confirmed that Kolasinac had tested positive and would have to self-isolate, while Elneny will have to self-isolate in Cairo after testing positive a second time.
With Elneny ruled out of the fixture, Mikel Arteta will be forced to break up his preferred midfield of Elneny and Thomas Partey, and is expected to bring in Dani Ceballos instead of the Egyptian.
Defenders Calum Chambers and Pablo Mari and forward Gabriel Martinelli are still on the road to recovery and are inching towards making a return to the pitch. Willian went off to Dubai unannounced, and there could be repercussions for the same.
Leeds United have been strengthened after the return of Kalvin Phillips back to training after the Englishman had picked up a shoulder injury in October. The return of Phillips in central midfield will no doubt provide a big boost to the side who have struggled in creativity and possession in recent games.
Spaniard Rodrigo Moreno is also back in training after finishing his time in isolation after testing positive for Covid-19. Bielsa is unlikely to throw in the forward in the starting lineup against Arsenal and Rodrigo will most likely take part later in the game coming off the bench.
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LEEDS UNITED (4-1-4-1) : Meslier; Ayling, Koch, Cooper, Dallas; Phillips; Helder Costa, Rodrigo, Klich, Harrison; Bamford.
ARSENAL (3-4-3): Leno; Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Bellerin, Partey, Ceballos, Saka; Pepe, Lacazette, Aubameyang.
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