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Arsenal negotiate Carabao Cup third round without Hale End starlet

Arsenal negotiate Carabao Cup third round without Hale End starlet

Arsenal to focus on domestic cups with strong Carabao Cup matchday XI

Mikel Arteta has pulled no punches tonight when choosing his preferred XI as Arsenal negotiate the third round of the Carabao Cup against aFC Wimbledon at the Emirates stadium tonight.

Arsenal negotiate Carabao Cup third round without Hale End starlet

Arsenal’s French striker Alexandre Lacazette celebrates scoring their third goal during the English Premier League football match between West Bromwich Albion and Arsenal at The Hawthorns stadium in West Bromwich, central England, on January 2, 2021. (Photo by Rui Vieira / POOL / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo by RUI VIEIRA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

The Spaniard opted to select a very strong cup side against much lesser opposition, with clear intentions to take the cup competition seriously in a bid to add to the Arsenal trophy cabinet in a 2021-22 campaign that will not feature any European involvement.

Both Thomas Partey and Sambi Lokonga were selected in tonight’s XI, while Alexandre Lacazette, Eddie Nketiah, and Pablo Mari were also given run outs.

https://twitter.com/Arsenal/status/1440734043016810501?s=20

However, questions can and should be raised about some of the selections made given current issues in and around the team regarding both fitness as well as contract disputes, and the team also fails to feature a number of promising Hale End products who are vying for long-term roles in the current regime.

Questionable team selection

But some have voiced concern over a missed chance to give highly-rated youngster Charlie Patino a run out tonight against Wimbleton after the England youth international has turned heads at the club with his recent chance to train with the Arsenal first-team.

Patino was not selected in the squad at all, with Mohamed Elneny being named as the only central option on the bench tonight. Further concerns can be levied about the inclusion of Thomas Partey considering his recent fitness concerns, and with the North London Derby just around the corner, many would have assumed that the Ghanaian international would have been focusing on a full return against Spurs.

Folarin Balogun was also left out of the XI in favor of Eddie Nketiah, who is all but likely destined for a departure from Arsenal in the summer after still failing to sign an extension in north London after a move in the summer window failed to materialize.

Read more:

Why Thomas Partey was handed a surprise start against Wimbledon

Aaron Ramsdale now Arsenal’s no.1 as Gunners look to cash in on Bernd Leno in January


This article was edited by Ben Browning.

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2 Liverpool FC 8 16 18
3 Manchester City 8 13 17
4 Brighton & Hove Albion 8 3 15
5 Manchester United 8 6 14
6 Everton FC 7 5 14
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Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 4
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