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Bad news for Chelsea, seven Arsenal stars sit out EL tie for well-rested Gunners

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is reportedly set to ring the changes for his side’s Europa League opener against FC Koln on Thursday night.

That means his preferred line-up is going to be well-rested for Sunday’s showdown with rivals Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, giving the visitors a good chance of coming away with a result despite their poor form on the road against the Blues in recent years.

As seen in the tweets below from journalist James Olley, Danny Welbeck, Laurent Koscielny, Mesut Ozil, Aaaron Ramsey, Alexandre Lacazette, Petr Cech and Granit Xhaka were all giving the day off training on Wednesday as none of them are expected to be in action in midweek.

It’s added that Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and David Ospina will be among a number of players to get an opportunity to impress, while Wenger will also have to make a call on Alexis Sanchez as he continues to try and reach full fitness after his recent injury problems.

It could also offer a chance for some of the young stars in the Arsenal squad to make an impression, with Reiss Nelson particularly standing out given his impressive work at youth level.

While it could make their Europa League outing a bit trickier with so many influential players sitting out, it’s clear that if Wenger goes through with these changes that he’s prioritising the Premier League.

That means a fully re-charged and motivated Arsenal should turn up at Stamford Bridge at the weekend, and Antonio Conte will have to ensure Chelsea are ready to stand up to their challenge.

More Stories aaron ramsey Alexandre Lacazette arsene wenger danny welbeck Granit Xhaka Laurent Koscielny mesut ozil Petr Cech