Pick your squad for Villareal – Part II – Defense

Tierney - The win? It's a start, isn't it | Quotes | News | Arsenal.com

So a thin majority wants to start the game with Ryan between the posts…why not? I doubt it will happen but who knows…

We are setting up the team as a 433 or 4231 and in any case, 4 at the back. So who starts for you?

Right back: Bellerin, Chambers or Cedric

RCB: Holding

LCB: Gabriel, Mari

LB: Tierney, Cedric, Xhaka, Saka

The big question mark is over Tierney’s fitness but if he is fit, I think he will start…

Seems Holding and Mari have Arteta’s preference to start as CBs in the Europa League

while Chambers seems to have taken over the starting position as RB…

Who would you like to see on your side?

So who would you like to see as our back four?


40 Responses to Pick your squad for Villareal – Part II – Defense

  1. fred1266 says:

    Bellerin holding Mari saka for me

  2. Brian mtume says:

    Like that

  3. RC78 says:

    I think Saka has to play further up the pitch…even if Tierney is injured…We can always play Cedric as LB. He had a few good games there…

    As for RB, I am not a fan of either but Chambers earned that spot for me.

  4. RC78 says:

    Regarding the CB pairing, Holding is a definite starter and maybe we could play Gabriel on Thursday but I think Mari will play….If I were to choose, I d go for Gabs because he can score on set pieces…

    Chambers, Holding, Gabs, Tierney OR
    Chambers, Holding, Gabds, Cedric

  5. Michaels says:

    Bellerin Holding Gabriel Saka

  6. Sahqib Ilyas says:


    Bellarin. Holding. Mari. Tierny/ cedric

    Partey. Xhaka

    Saka. Smith rowe. Martinelli


  7. AaronD says:

    Bellarin but I hope someone gets it into his skull that going inside 80% of the time means we have no width.
    Holding Mari
    Cedric (I don’t think Tierney will be fit)

  8. fred1266 says:

    When u see my attacking 3 then u would see why I put saka at LB
    I even feel we can play a back 3 for when we won fa cup

  9. LBG says:

    So did anyone watch the first game? Villarreal’s danger came from wing and full backs both sides.
    Bellerin cant defend and would be required to throughout the game on Thursday ( I dont believe Emery will sit back). I chose Soares and would back him with Saka ahead, if TIERNEY is not available. Think Mikel might well ask the mighty Scot for first half to give their full backs something to worry about and hope for two goal lead at half time. TO DARE IS TO WIN.
    Holding and Mari best defensive duo.
    COYG, and PSG to win Champions League.

  10. LBG says:

    Report suggesting Leno has suggested he wants to leave in the Summer. BUT it was Le Grove!

  11. RockyLives says:

    If Tierney is fit it’s a no brainer.

    RC – there was one CB option you didn’t give us, namely Chambers.

    If I had a free hand I’d put Chambers and Gabriel at CB, Bellerin on the right and Tierney left (Cedric if KT is out).

    But with the options before us, I’ve gone for Chambo at RB, Holding/Mari and KT or Ced.

    In the absence of Luiz, Chambers is the sort of footballing CB we could do with to help us be more effective playing out from the back.

  12. fred1266 says:

    On Sunday willian created the width

  13. LBG says:

    On Sunday Willian created very little!

  14. LBG says:

    Trust Gary Neville and Roy Keane wont be claiming:- damage to police officers, damage to the stadium, 25 stolen match balls and several corner flags; plus frightened staff in the dressing room was all “because they love the Club”?
    And will they even comment now?

  15. RC78 says:

    Hi Rocky – I really debated about Chambers as a CB but Arteta only played him once there, last sunday when Luiz got injured so I basically took that option off because it is very unlikely…but I can add it if you wish me to do so…

  16. RA says:

    An interesting reaping of available views, RC, which in and of itself is fair enough as all fans opinions matter.

    On the other hand I am happy the manager has to select the team, even if it is inevitable some fans will disagree with him, but frankly some of the opinions expressed above are surprising and seem to ignore the poor quality of some of the players who have been given a poll thumbs up.

  17. fred1266 says:

    LBG never said willian created anything, Aaron said bellerin was tuck inside and the reason why cause willian was occupying the wide space on the right side

  18. fred1266 says:

    With the lack of a Lb wonder why arteta doesn’t go back to the FA cup winning 343 formation , might even see the best out of PEA

  19. RC78 says:

    At the moment, we have:
    Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Tierney or
    Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Cedric (if Tierney is unfit)

    I am surprised that Bellerin is still getting so much support from the fans…

  20. RC78 says:

    Hi Fred – we never know…the thing is that we had AMN at LWB in that formation…

  21. LBG says:

    Surprised! I’m amazed, but takes all sorts…..to make a blog.

  22. fred1266 says:

    But we could line up

    Holding Mari Gabrielle
    Bellerin partey ESR martinelli
    Saka PEA Pepe

  23. RC78 says:

    I d rather put Willian (imagine!) than Martinelli at LWB…if we play 343, then we could also consider playing Saka at LWB and then play Pepe on the right and Martinelli on the left…

    But for me, we need to stick with a back 4…I would even say that we could play a flat 442 to destabilize Emery’s block…with Martinelli and Auba upfront and Saka and ESR on the side…

    Saka, Partey, Xhaka, ESR – Martinelli, Auba

    but this is just my silly idea…

  24. fred1266 says:

    Just as how am surprised amazed and baffled why xhaka still playing for us

    Am a big bellerin support so not sure why he gets so much criticism

  25. RC78 says:

    Bellerin is still decent going forward but he has not improved his defending in years…I think he went from superstar potential to not fullfilled his potential player…that s why he gets so much stick

  26. LBG says:

    No accusations Fred, but be honest, if you counted the number of times Bellerin has “gone wide” to the benefit of the team since he’s been with us, you wouldn’t need more than two hands.

  27. fred1266 says:

    I want willian now where near my team
    Reason for having martinelli instead of saka is because pepe plays way better on left IMO I have never seen martinelli play much on right side hence leave saka there

    Martinelli can give us the defensive support and attacking support cause he has great work rate

  28. fred1266 says:

    Also want xhaka no where there partey shielding defense and everyone else just attacking

  29. fred1266 says:

    Strange u have the same people who says xhaka and willian shouldn’t be in starting lineup but then insist day should be hmm

  30. fred1266 says:

    Bellerin is my favorite player so to be honest I rarely find he does much wrong, especially with the likes of luiz willian xhaka

  31. fred1266 says:

  32. LBG says:

    That’s what’s called Bellerin tinted glasses!

  33. LBG says:

    Moaninho to Roma. Thank God.

  34. fred1266 says:

    I also heard juventus

    I thought he wanted to coach Portugal

  35. Sue says:

    RC… Game on at the Etihad!! I’m excited 😄

  36. RC78 says:

    City is really annoyingly good…They really master possession football and game management…PSG is a long way off

  37. RC78 says:

    So the results are out…You have voted for:

    Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Tierney OR
    Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Cedric if Tierney is injured

    So your voted line-up so far is:
    Ryan – Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Tierney –

  38. RC78 says:

    New post on Midfielders now 🙂
    Allez Paris! Paris est Magique!

  39. GoonerB says:

    Thanks RC for an interesting idea for some posts leading up to our biggest game of the season.

    I missed yesterday but went with Leno. There have been some errors of kate but he still saves our skin quite frequently as well.

    RA made an interesting point about confirmation bias the other day in relation to my assertion that I still feel Arteta is progressing the side, despite many disappointing results, because we were dominating many key stats in games more consistently.

    It could easily be that what I am doing with this is just seizing on anything I can to back my argument in favour of Arteta through a confirmation bias.

    It’s easy to get swept along in the conviction of ones opinion and not always easy to step back and ask if ones argument is still completely reasoned.

    On this occasion RA I will stick to my guns. I am as stubborn as a Camule, a cross between a Camel and a Mule, the most stubborn creature known to man 😜

    I wonder though if this is partially what is happening with Leno? Dont get me wrong, when the choice between Leno and Martinez last season was there I went with Martinez. There wasnt too much between them and in reality we had 2 excellent keepers.

    Martinez just shaded it because he was a tad bigger and more comfortable with aerial balls which is often important in the EPL. Also he is home grown.

    Villa and Martinez are having a good season but I wonder if this is creating an overreaction of negative conformation bias against Leno? For me he is still an excellent keeper who has saved our bacon on a regular basis. He still deserves our support.

    On the defence I am liking Chambers at RB and would stick with him for this game. If Tierneys fit it’s a no brainer then one of our 2 left footed CB’s to partner Holding.

    My only extra consideration may be if Tierney is not fit then that left defensive side probably needs a bit more help, and I wonder whether the slightly more mobile Gabriel would offer that better covering across from CB?

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