Predicted Arsenal XI vs Southampton: Walcott on the left as injuries restrict Wenger’s options

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Arsenal have not won at Southampton on their last four trips to St Mary’s.

However, the Gunners begin Boxing Day’s clash as favourites due to the respective form of the two sides.

Southampton, who lost at home to Tottenham Hotspur last time out, have not won in their last six games in all competitions.

Meanwhile, Arsenal, who beat title rivals Manchester City on Monday night are on a four-match victory streak.

Injuries mean the Gunners are without Alexis Sanchez, Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta, Tomas Rosicky, Danny Welbeck, Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla.

However, Arsene Wenger still has more than enough talent available to get another win on the board.

This is how leading Gunners blog All Arsenal reckon Arsene Wenger will line up his troops at St Mary’s.

Read below for All Arsenal’s reasoning.

Predicted Arsenal XI vs Southampton
Likely Arsenal XI vs Southampton


GK) Petr Cech

The Czech’s importance can’t be understated, not only because of the quality he possesses, but due to the stability he provides our defence.

RB) Hector Bellerin

With practically no competition, Bellerin has to be starting on the right. Mathieu Debuchy just isn’t up to it anymore, and should be nowhere near the starting XI.

LB) Nacho Monreal

Kieran Gibbs showed during his cameo performance against Manchester City that he can’t hold a candle to Monreal. We were a far worse side when Joel Campbell was replaced by the left-back, and Monreal therefore shouldn’t fear being displaced.

CB) Per Mertesacker

A solid performance from the German giant against City should see him keep his spot, and Gabriel Paulista is unfortunately still being left out in the cold.

CB) Laurent Koscielny

The Frenchman is unquestionably up there with the best centre-backs in the world at the moment, and Arsene Wenger can’t possibly be thinking about dropping him.

DM) Mathieu Flamini

The Frenchman certainly has nothing on his young compatriot Francis Coquelin, but he’s shown recently that he can at least do a passable job in his absence. We’re still hoping to see a defensive midfielder arrive in January, but at least we know Flamini can fill in for the moment.

CM) Aaron Ramsey

The Welshman’s form has been worryingly erratic recently, and it’s unclear what the problem is. He’s making great runs and getting into great positions, but his confidence in front of goal seems non-existent. He also lets his defensive duties slip occasionally, something that needs to be remedied with no Francis Coquelin alongside him.

CAM) Mesut Özil

Özil showed on Monday night yet again that he’s one of the best in the world, with his two more assists bringing him to 15 for the season in the Premier League alone. He really looks capable of guiding us to our first title in years, and if he continues in this vein of form then it seems almost inevitable.

RAM) Joel Campbell

Although he was substituted halfway through the second half – and missed a couple of really good chances to score – the game against Man City was arguably Campbell’s best game in an Arsenal shirt. The effort he put in getting up and down the pitch was phenomenal, and we looked a far weaker outfit when he left the field.

LAM) Theo Walcott

His superb goal was the icing on the cake of his performance against City, and just like Campbell he put in a real defensive shift. Walcott could be seen racing back to slide in on Yaya Toure in the dying stages of the game, and was one of the top performers on the day.

ST) Olivier Giroud

Another goal for the Frenchman, who is in fine form at the moment. He’s far and away our top scorer so far this season, and is really befitting from the creativity of Mesut Özil.

More Stories Aaron Ramsey Alexis Sanchez Arsene Wenger Danny Welbeck Francis Coquelin Hector Bellerin Jack Wilshere Joel Campbell Laurent Koscielny Mathieu Flamini Mesut Ozil Mikel Arteta Nacho Monreal Olivier Giroud Per Mertesacker Petr Cech Santi Cazorla theo walcott tomas rosicky