Date: 9th September 2017 at 11:22am

By Reece Dixon

The Gunners have no new fitness concerns ahead of their meeting with Bournemouth.

Santi Cazorla remains a long term absentee, while Jack Wilshere is expected to miss out for a lack of match fitness.

As for the visitors, Eddie Howe can call upon Simon Francis after the defender missed the last two games with a hamstring injury.

It’s an important game for Arsene Wenger’s side. After the thumping at Liverpool, the loss of Oxlade-Chamberlain and the failed to secure new recruitments, The Emirates is expected to be restless.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

The sides played out one of the games of the season at the Vitality Stadium in January. Bournemouth shocked the Gunners by taking a 3-0 lead, before Wenger’s side fought back late on to rescue a point.

In November, Arsenal ended a run of three consecutive draws to win 3-1 against the Cherries at The Emirates.

Britain Football Soccer - Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League - Emirates Stadium - 27/11/16 Arsenal's Theo Walcott celebrates scoring their second goal with Nacho Monreal Action Images via Reuters / Tony O'Brien Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 45 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

Theo Walcott celebrates Arsenal’s second against Bournemouth in November.

PREDICTED ARSENAL XL

Following the controversy surrounding Alexis Sanchez, the Chilean could be taken out of the firing line. Sead Kolasinac is expected to return to left-wing-back, while following Oxlade-Chamberlain’s sale, Hector Bellerin could reprise his right-wing-back spot.

Aaron Ramsey was the subject of heavy criticism for his defensive display at Liverpool, the Welshman could drop to the bench in place of Francis Coquelin.

Arsenal XI: Cech; Bellerin, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Monreal, Kolasinac; Coquelin, Xhaka; Welbeck, Ozil, Lacazette.

MATCH PREDICTION

A good performance is almost as necessary as the three points. Thankfully the Gunners have been formidable at home of late, winning their last six league games at the Emirates, netting 15 goals in the process.

A surprise loss would see the Gunners lose three successive Premier League games for the first time since January 2012.

Arsenal will see off Bournemouth today, but the three points will not convince Gooners that Wenger’s side can compete this season.

Prediction: 2-1

Thoughts ahead of the game, Gooners? Let us know your line-ups and pre-match opinion in the comments…

 

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