Wenger to make big changes for tie against Southampton

Arsenal manager has been reassured Olivier Giroud’s muscular injury is nothing serious

Arsène Wenger: “We will have a mixture of youth and experience but still 90 per cent of a first-team squad”

Arsène Wenger: “We will have a mixture of youth and experience but still 90 per cent of a first-team squad”

 

Arsène Wenger will make wholesale changes to his regular line-up for the quarter-final at home against Southampton tonight, while he has been reassured that Olivier Giroud’s muscular injury is nothing serious.

Giroud came on as a substitute in the 3-1 win against Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, and he felt something pull after what was his first involvement. Wenger immediately thought Giroud had hurt his hamstring but it is the groin that has sustained the damage.

Wenger, however, has described the problem as only “slight”, and although Giroud will not play against Southampton, he has not been ruled out of the Premier League fixture at West Ham United on Saturday.

Lucas Pérez has recovered quicker than expected from the ankle injury that he sustained in the previous round – the 2-0 home win against Reading on October 25th – and the striker is in line to feature against Southampton.

Wenger has used his squad players in both rounds of the competition so far – against Nottingham Forest, when the team won 4-0 away from home, and Reading – and he will not deviate from the policy for Southampton’s visit.

Start in goal

Mathieu DebuchyLaurent KoscielnyShkodran Mustafi

Wenger is expected to start with Carl Jenkinson, Gabriel Paulista, Rob Holding and Kieran Gibbs in defence. The manager will also rest Mesut Özil, Theo Walcott and Alexis Sánchez.

He has decisions to make across midfield, where he will chose from Mohamed Elneny, Francis Coquelin, Alex Oxlade Chamberlain, Alex Iwobi, Aaron Ramsey, Granit Xhaka, Jeff Reine Adélaïde and Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

Mixture

“I rested Carl completely against Bournemouth because he had played in two big games [against Manchester United and Paris St-Germain] and I felt he needed a breather [having only recently returned from a nine-month injury lay-off]. Sometimes mentally three games in a week demands a lot. Carl’s back in and we’ll put Gabriel in the centre.” Guardian service

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.