Soccer NewsThursday 12th October 2017

Four defenders out: Two ways Arsenal could line up vs Watford to deal with mini injury crisis

Four defenders out: Two ways Arsenal could line up vs Watford to deal with mini injury crisis

Arsenal have problems going into this weekend’s Premier League clash against Watford.

The Gunners have potentially four defenders missing through injury ahead of Saturday, with Laurent Koscielny set to undergo a fitness test.

According to the London Evening Standard, the Frenchman is Arsenal’s best hope of a fitness boost this weekend, with Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers and Sead Kolasinac all ruled out.

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Arsene Wenger has some thinking to do…does he stick with three at the back, or is this the ideal time to try a change back to a back-four system?

Here’s a look at Wenger’s two best options to tinker with his side for this weekend and possibly beyond…

3-4-3 – Chance for wonderkid Reiss Nelson?

First up, if Arsenal do stick with a back three and wing-backs system, that gives them pretty much just three fit central defenders to choose from.

Per Mertesacker should come in, with Rob Holding and Nacho Monreal either side of him.

Questions remain over youngster Holding after some sloppy displays at points this season, but overall Arsenal won’t be too unhappy with that back three.

At wing-back, however, they could encounter problems, with Hector Bellerin likely to be forced to fill in for Kolasinac on the left. The Spaniard has played there before, but the last time it was tried it didn’t go too well as Arsenal were thrashed 4-0 by Liverpool.

And while Reiss Nelson is an exciting young talent, it could be a big risk bringing the 17-year-old in for such an early taste of Premier League action, particularly when he has generally played a more attacking midfield role for the club’s youth sides.

Back to 4-2-3-1?

Alternatively, Arsenal might be better off adopting a 4-2-3-1 system for this game at least, though some fans might also suggest sticking with it for good.

Wenger dropped this system late on last season, but with his current options it may be the best way to put together a functioning defence on Saturday.

This would allow Bellerin to play in his preferred right-back role, with Monreal taking up the left-back slot instead of coming in as the third option at centre-back.

This also allows Arsenal to bring in an extra attacker, with football.london reporting that both Danny Welbeck and Mesut Ozil should be back for this match.

What system would you like to see this weekend, Gooners?

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