Predicted XI

How Arsenal and Chelsea could line up in Boxing Day meeting

Both sides have a few injury concerns to contend with which will mean a few extra squad players getting minutes over Christmas

8:00am on Thursday 24th December 2020
Paul Macdonald

Arsenal and Chelsea both have their own injury concerns to contend with ahead of their Premier League meeting on Boxing Day.

For the hosts, who haven't won a match that wasn't in the Europa League since the beginning of November, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remains sidelined and won't make the squad in time.

Elsewhere, Gabriel Martinelli's injury scare picked up in the League Cup against Manchester City looks not to be as serious as first thought, considering he is just back from a long-term problem, but he probably won't be risked here.

Granit Xhaka will however return from a three-game ban after being red-carded against Burnley.

Mikel Arteta may then decide that a 3-4-3 is his preferred formation, with Bukayo Saka installed on the left of the attack, and either Willian or Nicolas Pepe on the right of Alexandre Lacazette.

Chelsea's problems come in the full-back positions. Reece James requires surgery, while Ben Chilwell landed awkwardly on his ankle in the win over West Ham and will probably be missing until the new year.

In attack Callum Hudson-Odoi is fit again but will probably be on the bench, while Hakim Ziyech's frustrating injury problems have continued, and he will be targeting the Manchester City match at new year for a return. Cesar Azpilicueta and Emerson will deputise.

Frank Lampard will retain Tammy Abraham in attack after his two goals against the Hammers, while he will be hoping Timo Werner can finally bring his poor run in front of goal to an end.

Arsenal and Chelsea Predicted XI's

Arsenal vs Chelsea - Football tactics and formations

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