Alexis will stay at Arsenal: Wenger

In addition to fitness, Arsenal also has recent Wembley history on their side, winning their last eight games played at the world-renown stadium including 3 FA Cup final wins and 2 Community Shield wins. Conte has paid over 100 million on three players, but his squad, which faces the extra challenge of the Champions League this season, is painfully short of strength in depth now Costa is exiled and Eden Hazard and new recruit Tiemoue Bakayoko are injured.

Despite signing France striker Alexandre Lacazette from Lyon in July for a club record 60 million euros (then $68 million), Arsenal has chosen to keep Sanchez for the final year of his contract.

Both clubs will be keen to get their hands on the Community Shield and begin the season with a trophy already in their bags.

The Blues are however expected to include new signings Alvaro Morata and Antonio Rudiger in their starting XI for the traditional curtain-raiser at Wembley. The former, however, could play a part from the bench after participating in intense training sessions during the week.

Arsenal's league campaign ended in frustration when they finished fifth, meaning they missed out on Champions League qualification for the first time since 1997.

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One season out of the Champions League may be too much for 28-year-old Sanchez.

"They have replaced Costa with Morata".

The dynamic of Arsenal's week will be fundamentally altered for the first time in 20 years by those Thursday games, especially the return trips from away games that drag into Friday, and handling that as well as challenging for the title, or just the top four, will not be easy.

"I think friendly games have ended for us", Conte said. Arsenal nearly won it in that first season, after entering through the Champions League, only to lose the final to Galatasaray on penalties. "It's an important game, for sure", via BBC Sport. Live TV coverage in the United Kingdom will be available on BT Sport 1.

Wenger acknowledges that there were many who wanted to see him move on, but he remains unfazed by his critics.

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