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No Xhaka, Tomiyasu starts: Mikel Arteta’s best Arsenal XI after Deadline Day

Arsenal’s season may have got off to the worst possible start but they ended deadline day with a bang by signing Takehiro Tomiyasu from Bologna to take their total to six new signings.

Mikel Arteta and his side will now have to bounce back from three successive league defeats to kickstart their campaign following the international break.

Where will Arsenal finish this season?

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Top four





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Bottom half

But what is now the Spaniard’s best starting XI? He has had to mix and match at the back due to injuries and illness, whilst Martin Odegaard has only been able to make one appearance since returning and there has been issues up top, too.

Football FanCast take a look into what could be the Gunners’ best lineup following the summer transfer window…


Four of their six new names could feature amongst the starting XI, including new right-back Tomiyasu and the aforementioned Odegaard in the no.10 role.

Despite the arrival of Aaron Ramsdale in a £24m move from relegated Sheffield United, Bernd Leno is expected to retain the spot between the sticks for the time being.

The £18m-rated Japan international would then line up on the right side of the defence, with Kieran Tierney on the other flank and both Gabriel, who is yet to feature this campaign, and £50m arrival Ben White through the middle.

Tierney’s presence along the left wing will allow Tomiyasu, who has been lauded as a “warrior“, to tuck inside and act as a third centre-back whilst the Gunners are on the attack. He’s versatile enough to play both positions and is a considerable upgrade on the likes of Calum Chambers and Cedric Soares.

Pablo Mari and Rob Holding would be axed from defence, too.

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There’s also no place for Granit Xhaka in midfield. The 28-year-old was sent off against Manchester City for a silly challenge and that made a mockery of the club’s decision to extend his contract, particularly after his contract was extended despite firm interest from AS Roma throughout the off-season.

Instead, a fully-fit Thomas Partey could partner newly-capped Belgian international Albert Sambi Lokonga, who has been one bright light in Arsenal’s dreary season so far.

Whilst pairing Odegaard in the attack may be Bukayo Saka on the left and Nicolas Pepe on the right, meaning there’s no place for Emile Smith Rowe. The Gunners’ new no.10 may have to rotate out with the Norweigen throughout the season.

Up top, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should be preferred to the out-of-contract Alexandre Lacazette, especially as it’s his best position.

AND in other news, Bye-bye Arteta: Edu can revive Arsenal by hiring 52 y/o dubbed a “master” by Guardiola

Article title: No Xhaka, Tomiyasu starts: Mikel Arteta’s best Arsenal XI after Deadline Day

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