Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest: How Gunners should line up with Kieran Tierney, three wonderkids and Mesut Ozil

Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest: How Gunners should line up with Kieran Tierney, three wonderkids and Mesut Ozil
Football

Unai Emery could make several changes to his starting line-up when Arsenal host Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup third round on Tuesday, LIVE on talkSPORT 2.

The Gunners will be buoyed by Sunday’s late 3-2 win over Aston Villa after Ainsley Maitland-Niles was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence in the first-half.

Mesut Ozil has only played 71 minutes of first-team football this season

Getty Images – Getty

Mesut Ozil has only played 71 minutes of first-team football this season

The Forest game presents a chance for Arsenal’s youngsters and fringe players to impress.

Arsenal boss Emery could hand a first appearance in nine months to Rob Holding, who has returned to training after recovering from a serious knee injury.

The centre-half had been a regular in the Gunners’ defence before rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament in a 2-2 draw with Manchester United last December.

Hector Bellerin, who suffered the same injury a month later, featured with Holding and summer signing Kieran Tierney in an Under-23s game against Wolves last week.

Hector Bellerin made his return to action against Wolves in an Under-23s game on Friday

Getty Images – Getty

Hector Bellerin made his return to action against Wolves in an Under-23s game on Friday

However, Bellerin could be saved to play in next week’s trip to Manchester United with Maitland-Niles suspended.

It could mean Calum Chambers operates at right-back against Forest in a back four with Holding, Shkodran Mustafi and Tierney.

The Scotland international joined Arsenal in a £25million deal from Celtic last month, but is yet to make his debut due to a groin injury.

Lucas Torreira, who has started just one of Arsenal’s six Premier League games this season, is likely to partner Matteo Guendouzi in holding midfield roles, which would give Granit Xhaka a much-needed rest.

LIVE on talkSPORT

Check out all the live commentaries coming up across the talkSPORT network this week

  • Portsmouth vs Southampton (Tuesday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT
  • Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest (Tuesday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT 2
  • MK Dons vs Liverpool (Wednesday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT
  • Manchester United vs Rochdale (Wednesday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT 2
  • Stoke vs Nottingham Forest (Friday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT 2
  • Sheffield United vs Liverpool (Saturday, 12:30pm) – talkSPORT
  • QPR vs West Bromwich Albion (Saturday, 12:30pm) – talkSPORT 2
  • Chelsea vs Brighton (Saturday, 3pm) – talkSPORT 2
  • Everton vs Manchester City (Saturday, 5:30pm) – talkSPORT

Mesut Ozil, Joe Willock and Bukayo Saka could cause havoc to Forest’s defence.

Ozil was an unused substitute over the weekend with Willock making it off the bench, while Saka was hooked off at half-time.

The trio could play in behind Reiss Nelson, who has not started an Arsenal game since August 17.

Nelson, a winger by trait, might have to lead the Arsenal line due to their lack of number nine options.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe could be rested, Alexandre Lacazette is sidelined with an ankle injury and Eddie Nketiah is on loan at Leeds.

Emiliano Martinez, who pulled off a string of fine saves in Arsenal’s 3-0 Europa League win over Frankfurt last week, is expected to come in for Bernd Leno.

Is this how Arsenal could line up against Nottingham Forest?

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Is this how Arsenal could line up against Nottingham Forest?