Watford host Arsenal in tomorrow’s late afternoon Premier League kick-off, as domestic football action returns after the international break.
The Gunners head into the fixture on the back of a morale boosting win over Manchester United, which put them second in the table, but one-eye is likely to be on this week’s crucial Champions League showdown with Bayern Munich.
Arsenal welcome Mathieu Flamini back to contention along with Mikel Arteta, though neither is expected to start in the clash against Watford.
Laurent Koscielny faces a late fitness test after his injury troubles in recent weeks, whilst Jack Wilshere, Tomas Rosicky and Danny Welbeck remain absent.
Watford are without Lloyd Doyley, Jose Manuel Jurado and Joel Ekstrand for the hosting of Arsenal.
Arsenal are expected to continue with Petr Cech between the sticks but a promise of first-team football for David Ospina may result in a change, with the Colombian coming in for this fixture and Cech starting against Bayern Munich on Tuesday.
If Koscielny is not passed fit then the back-four will remain unchanged from two weeks ago, with Gabriel Paulista partnering Per Mertsacker in the centre whilst Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal continue their roles out wide.
Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla will be the midfield lynchpins in a deeper role, where it’s crucial they limit Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo’s involvement in the game, whilst Mesut Ozil is ahead of them in the central attacking role.
Alexis Sanchez should start despite returning late from international duty, with Aaron Ramsey on the right; looking to kickstart his season after scoring against Andorra earlier this week. Up top, Theo Walcott will lead the line.
Arsenal XI: Cech; Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal; Coquelin, Cazorla; Ramsey, Ozil, Alexis; Walcott
Watford will start with two former Tottenham Hotspur players, as Heruelho Gomes will play between the sticks and Etienne Capoue will be in the centre of midfield alongside Valeron Behrami.
Arsenal must keep the impressive Odion Ighalo quiet, along with his strike partner Troy Deeney, but should be confident of breaching a back-line that includes Chelsea loanee Nathan Ake.
Watford XI: Gomes; Nyom, Cathcart, Prodl, Ake; Anya, Capoue, Behrami, Abdi; Ighalo, Deeney