Basel Preview: Team News, Injury Updates and Predicted Lineups
After such an amazing display of attacking football over the weekend, all eyes would be on the Gunners, as they take on FC Basel in the final Champions League group stage fixtures. This would have been a dead rubber contest if Arsene Wenger’s side had done what was expected of them when PSG came to town, but there would be an air of uncertainty as another second placed finish looms.
The bookies would have high odds for FC Basel in this game and remember that, for Champions League betting, visit William Hill website. With a home clash against Stoke coming up this weekend, Arsene Wenger would rotate his side to keep the players fresh, but he would recall that the last time he made wholesale changes to the squad, he was embarrassed at home to Southampton in the EFL Cup. The boss has confirmed that Olivier Giroud is back in the squad following a groin problem, but the team would be without the suspended Francis Coquelin.
The game could see Giroud return to the middle with the red-hot Alexis Sanchez probably getting some deserved rest. The game would be of particular interest to Granit Xhaka and most especially, Mohamed Elneny, who waxed lyrical about his time in the Swiss outfit,
“I am very happy that I will be going back to my former club Basel. I was there for three years and have fantastic memories of the players, fans, people in the streets and also my friends in Basel. I was very happy there and of course I am delighted to go back to catch up with the people there and experience the feeling of playing in Basel again.
“Playing for Basel was very important for my career. I represented the club in the Champions League, Europa League and the Swiss league. So for me I gained a lot of experience during my time at Basel. I had move to a European league which is very different from playing in Egypt. So everything I learnt there helped me when I moved to Arsenal. It was a beautiful time of my career, I achieved important things and I learnt a lot during my time there. I am very happy with my overall experience there.”
From the nice words, it’s evident that Elneny would not celebrate if he manages to find the back of the net against FC Basel tonight. The home side would be gnashing their teeth coming into this game, following a 3 – 1 loss to BSC Young Boys over the weekend. That defeat didn’t affect their stronghold on the Swiss League table, even though second placed Young Boys managed to gain some momentum.
Basel’s form in the Champions League has been atrocious, as the Swiss side has failed to record a single win their five group stage games, managing two draws against minnows, Ludogorets Razgard, while losing to Arsenal and PSG (twice). Another poor result tonight and Ludogorets getting something favorable in Paris would see FC Basel knocked out of Europe entirely.
Arsenal: Per Mertesacker, Danny Welbeck (knee), Santi Cazorla (Achilles tendon), Chuba Akpom (back), Hector Bellerin (ankle)
Basel: Dereck Kutesa (knock), Jean-Paul Boetius (ankle), Kevin Bua (muscle)
- Last Five Games: D D W L W
- Last Result: West Ham 1-5 Arsenal
- Leading Goalscorer: Alexis Sanchez (13)
- Last Five Games: D W W W L
- Last Result: Young Boys 3-1 Basel
- Leading Goalscorer: Matias Delgado, Seydou Doumbia (9)
Arsenal (4-2-3-1): Ospina; Gabriel, Koscielny, Mustafi, Gibbs; Xhaka, Elneny; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Iwobi; Giroud
Basel (4-3-3): Vaclik; Riveros, Eder Balanta, Suchy, Lang; Xhaka, Delgado, Zuffi; Steffen, Bjarnasson, Doumbia
Gooner Daily predicts a 2 – 0 Arsenal win.
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