Arsenal Vs Doncaster Preview: Why being complacent could result in an early exit

Coming off a great result at Stamford Bridge (win or not), The Gunners kick on to their first Carabao Cup fixture of the season versus League One minnows Doncaster.

Straight off the bat, everyman and his dog would be predicting a scintillating Arsenal performance, resulting in a thrashing. However, if we come into the game thinking we’ve already won, the outcome could be quite the opposite. Arsenal as of late have been on reasonably good form, sinking both Bournemouth in the league and FC Koln in the Europa League, as well as that afore mentioned well-earned draw against the Champions. A win would be expected, and needed. A loss this early in the competition, agaInst such oppostion, would lead to fans calling for the heads of the players, let alone the Manager. As a result, while I don’t expect for one second that we’ll be playing the likes of Sánchez, we should ideally be playing a mixture of experience and youth in that starting eleven.

Before I get onto who I believe should start, we should have a quick run through the team we’re facing. Doncaster have had a difficult start to life in League One, and that’s being polite. 6 points in 8 games is frankly horrendous. Being in 19th place is no ideal situation for any club, and being in such dire form coming in to a gargantuan match against Arsenal is terrible and untimely to say the least.

With that out of the way, time for the eleven I’d like to see start Vs Doncaster.


GK: David Ospina – Our trusted Cup Goalie, should be a relatively quiet match for him.

RCB: Rob Holding – Should be an easy game for him and that’s why game time in this match will be so pivotal for him. This match, if all goes to plan, should be a morale-booster if nothing else.

CB: Per Mertesacker – A student of the game, Mertesacker would be the defender I would put my trust in to keep the defence regimented against a team like Doncaster.

LCB: Krystian Bielik; Haven’t seen many glimpses of Bielik yet, would like to see him get some first team minutes.


LWB: Monreal – Mr consistent, a stalwart in the Arsenal side. He’s a must when it comes to experience in the team.

LCM: Mohamed Elneny – I get onto him for playing like a crab, passing sideways; regardless of his passing, he will be able to hold down the midfield, and can be physical when needs be.

RCM: Ainsley Maitland-Niles – While being a victim of another Arsenal Wenger “where should I play him” experiment, Maitland-Niles has impressed midweek in the Europa league Vs Cologne. In this position, Ainsley looks like an exciting prospect.

LAM: Alex Iwobi – A creative and skillful player, just lacks both confidence and a final product. A class performance Vs Doncaster could put him back into contention for a first team place.

RAM: Reiss Nelson – What a prospect he is looking to be. Skillful, a wizard on the ball, and good in front of goal; he seems to have it all in his locker. The argument with him is to not rush him into the starting eleven, but this perfect first team experience.

ST: Olivier Giroud – What else can I say, it’s the sexy Frenchman himself. Predicting a brace from him on the night, should dominate in the air and bully the defence.

Score prediction: 3-0 Arsenal.

There is my preview, what about yours? Leave comments on the Clock End Talk, and don’t hesitate to contact me @carltonlolz.

Carl Higgins

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