Arsenal vs Southampton
The Arsenal and Southampton line-ups on Sunday in the Premier League were as follows.
Arsenal: Leno, Lichtsteiner, Mustafi, Papastathopoulos, Kolasinac, Torreira, Xhaka, Iwobi, Ramsey, Mkhitaryan, Lacazette
Subs: Cech, Koscielny, Ozil, Aubameyang, Monreal, Suarez, Guendouzi
Southampton: Gunn, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Stephens, Valery, Hojbjerg, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Targett, Armstrong, Redmond
Subs: McCarthy, Yoshida, Austin, Elyounoussi, Bertrand, Slattery, Obafemi
Ralph Hasenhuttl picks no strikers
Alarm bells were ringing for Southampton fans before the Arsenal game.
The Saints are in deep relegation trouble.
Indeed, they started Sunday’s match third bottom of the league, a point behind Cardiff City.
Ralph Hasenhuttl started his life at Southampton with an instant bounce. But the Saints arrived at Arsenal with just one win in five.
The Gunners are notorious for conceding goals, yet Hasenhuttl picked a side with no strikers in the XI.
Was that a major mistake?
#saintsfc not starting a striker against a back four of Lichtsteiner, Mustafi, Sokratis, Kolasinac is quite baffling.
— Jack Rosser (@JackRosser_) February 24, 2019
Mesut Ozil & Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang benched
For Arsenal fans, the big pre-match talking points surrounded Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang starting the game on the bench.
That Ozil was again left out the Gunners XI wasn’t too much of a shock.
Unai Emery has consistently omitted Ozil from his side in recent weeks and months.
But why was Aubameyang left on the bench? That was more puzzling.
SCOUT: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was the second-most popular captaincy pick of GW27, having been handed the armband by 800,552 #FPL managers
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) February 24, 2019
No real issue with that XI from Emery. Like that he's stuck with 4-2-3-1. Would he gone with Ozil rather than Ramsey at No.10. But Arsenal in the middle of 4 games in 9 days, need to rotate. Bench is strong, players who can make a difference.
— Charles Watts (@charles_watts) February 24, 2019