How Arsenal could line up against Dundalk with Balogun, Azeez and Runarsson as Arteta gives kids a run out

ARSENAL are on the brink of a crisis after their North London derby defeat to Tottenham at the weekend.

The result left them languishing 15th in the Premier League after 11 games.

But Mikel Arteta's side have been able to find solace in the Europa League this term, having won five out of five in the competition.

Despite already being through, the Spaniard will be desperate to notch another win when his side face Dundalk on Thursday night, to keep the doubters at bay, at least temporarily.

The 38-year-old is still likely to ring the changes, however, having used the competition as a launchpad for some of his younger talents.

Summer recruit Alex Runarsson, 25, is set for another run out in the competition between the sticks, having appeared three times so far this term.

Cedric Soares will likely replace Hector Bellerin at right-back, while Sead Kolasinac returned from a coronavirus layoff against Rapid Vienna last week and could start again in place of Kieran Tierney.

Pablo Mari marked his return to action with a goal against the Austrians, and will likely step up his recovery with another run-out.

Shkodran Mustafi has been a regular in the Europa League, and could be called upon ahead of Rob Holding – with Gabriel Magalhaes given the night off and David Luiz still recovering from his nasty cut sustained against Wolves.

Mohamed Elneny may return at the heart of the midfield and could be partnered by Dani Ceballos.

Teenager Miguel Azeez will be hoping for a debut, having been an unused substitute twice this season.

Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka will be rested, while Joe Willock may be utilised further forward.

Having been suspended in the Premier League, Nicolas Pepe is a certainty to be fielded on the right flank, while Reiss Nelson and Emile Smith-Rowe also vie for Willian's usual place in the attacking midfield trident.

Eddie Nketiah may be given the nod upfront, although Folarin Balogun could be given a first Gunners start, having scored against Molde from the bench.

Alex Lacazette may be involved, although Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hasn't featured in the Europa League since matchday one.

Gabriel Martinelli is nearing a return, having featured for the Under-21s in the EFL Trophy this week – but won't quite be ready for this one.

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