Arsenal team news: Xhaka missing but Zinchenko returns as Arteta goes all out for three points

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Friday night sees one of those games that on paper should be so easy for Arsenal to win, but the reality is often that it isn’t so.

Bottom-of-the-table Southampton visit the Emirates Stadium to face the table-toppers, and they’ll surely want to follow Bournemouth’s blueprint in terms of disrupting the Gunners free-flowing game.

At 2-0 up the Cherries probably thought they waltz away from north London with all three points, but they hadn’t counted on an epic comeback from the hosts that sent the home fans wild.

Mikel Arteta, who has seen his side blow two-goal leads in the last two games, can surely do without another night of high drama before what many people are suggesting will be the game – next week against Man City – that decides the destination of the title.

Simply put, Arsenal have to be ruthless and take all three points to take them into the match against Pep Guardiola’s swashbucklers with confidence.

Granit Xhaka has missed out with an illness, but Oleksander Zinchenko returns for the hosts.

Elsewhere in the starting XI, Arteta has gone with his tried and tested of Ramsdale, White, Holding, Gabriel, Partey, Vieira, Odegaard, Saka, Jesus and Martinelli.

It’s a strong line-up but it can’t be forgotten that the Saints are fighting for their Premier League lives and aren’t likely to just roll over.

With all to play for, this game could ebb and flow like the Premier League classics of yesteryear.

More Stories Aaron Ramsdale Ben White Bukayo Saka Fabio Vieira Gabriel Jesus Gabriel Magalhaes Gabriel Martinelli Granit Xhaka Martin Odegaard Mikel Arteta Oleksandr Zinchenko Rob Holding Thomas Partey

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