It is not a 100 percent accurate way of telling which Arsenal players will be in the starting line-up, but almost every time Arsene Wenger chooses one of the Gunners to do a press conference with him then that player will be in the team.
Yesterday the Arsenal boss spoke to the football media as Arsenal prepare for the Champions League away tie with Ludogorets and it was the two goal hero from Saturday’s win at Sunderland, Olivier Giroud, who fielded questions alongside Wenger, as the match preview in The Mirror shows.
This is hardly surprising with the big French forward back and raring to go after a spell out of the side with injury, but with the manager also stating hi9s determination to finish on top of our Champions League group for the first time in seven years, it will be interesting to see how many other changes he makes and whether he rests some of the big players for the north London derby clash with Tottenham at the weekend.
Wenger said, “Finishing first is our prime target. Step by step: qualify first. We have played Paris Saint-Germain away, and play them at home to come.
“We have a good opportunity to finish top. It is an advantage because you play the second game in the last 16 at home, so you know exactly what you have to achieve at home.
“You have the support. If it goes to extra-time or penalties, you play at home. So it’s a little advantage.
“But if you can finish first, why finish second? We have paid the price many times when we’ve finished second, having to play Barcelona or Bayern Munich. So we think it’s important.”
The prof has learnt the hard way over the last six seasons what finishing second can mean so it sounds like he is determined not to do so this year. However we already have to do without Monreal, Walcott, Cazorla and Bellerin, so I think he cannot afford to rest any more first choice Gunners, making my line-up look like this.
Jenkinson, Mustafi, Koscielny, Gibbs
Chamberlain, Ozil, Alexis
Is this how you want Arsenal to line up tonight?