Predicted XI

Willian's first league start since December? - How Arsenal could line up against Leicester City

The Brazilian has been exiled from the starting XI for almost two months, but his positive second-half showing against Benfica could earn him a recall

9:00am on Saturday 27th February 2021
Team FC

Arsenal will be looking to move back into the top half of the Premier League table when they travel to Leicester City on Sunday afternoon.

Mikel Arteta's men scraped past Portuguese giants Benfica in the Europa League in midweek thanks to a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang brace, and they'll be hoping to build on that positive result over the weekend.

A 4-2 victory over Leeds United a few weeks ago is the Gunners' only league victory in their last five outings. That poor run of recent form has seen the North London outfit fall to 11th in the top-flight standings, 11 points behind West Ham, who currently occupy the final Champions League spot.

It's been a tough season for the Emirates Stadium outfit. A slow start looked as though it might end Arteta's brief spell in charge, but a 3-1 Boxing Day win over Chelsea reignited their campaign.

Arteta will be hoping his side can use Thursday's victory to rediscover their best form, starting on Sunday.

Bernd Leno has been a consistent performer once again throughout 2020/21 and is set to start between the sticks behind a back four consisting of Hector Bellerin, David Luiz, Gabriel and Kieran Tierney.

The Arsenal defence has been a pretty solid unit this season, conceding just 26 goals in 25 league games, meaning they have the joint-third best defensive record in the division.

Ahead of them is likely to be a double pivot of Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey.

Although Real Madrid loanee Dani Ceballos has been putting in improved performances of late, summer-signing Partey is expected to take his place for this one after recovering from an injury that has kept him out for a couple of weeks.

An attacking quartet involving the ever-improving Bukayo Saka, club-captain Aubameyang, January signing Martin Odegaard and the controversial Willian could feature from the off at the King Power stadium.

Former Chelsea man Willian has failed to impress since making the move across the capital in the summer for huge wages at the Emirates, but his improved performance as a second-half substitute against Benfica could see him recalled to the starting XI for the first time in over two months.

Arsenal predicted XI against Leicester City

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