Alexandre Lacazette starts for Arsenal in season curtain-raiser against Leicester

Alexandre Lacazette starts for Arsenal in season curtain-raiser against Leicester

Alexandre Lacazette starts for Arsenal in season curtain-raiser against Leicester

Mourinho confirmed yesterday that the club were in talks about re-signing the Swede for the second half of the new campaign.

Guardiola could start with Jesus and Sergio Aguero up front, given he has used a 3-5-2 set-up for much of pre-season, which suggests Walker and Danilo are to be deployed as wing-backs. Özil's talent is well known, and he's also one of those polarizing players who you either love or just don't get, but that doesn't mean he's not a vital part of Arsenal's attack.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed how uncertainty over his future last season created a "lack of clarity in the dressing room" and saw players asking him what was going on. Ozil has a minor ankle injury but there's a chance he'll be ready for Friday. Leicester will be well aware of this fact and will definitely try to take advantage of this.

Arsenal host Leicester City with kick-off scheduled for 7.45pm on Friday, August 11. They finally went out and signed a striker to replace Olivier Giroud, but they chose Alexandre Lacazette, a player who doesn't start for France because he hasn't been able to unseat... He had some encouraging moments in the Community Shield on Sunday. Arsenal have a history of not showing up in big games and this must be eradicated. Granit Xhaka has an excellent passing range and likes to shoot from outside the box.

TSF: Progress towards a deal for Monaco's Thomas Lemar has stalled, which is unfortunate.

Although one could say that there was next to learning curve for Conte then as he marched to the Premier League title with no hiccups along the way. Lemar would be a great signing, so hopefully we see the buzz around that reappear. A fee of 40 million pounds proved too substantial for Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to turn down, even if manager Antonio Conte wanted to retain the midfielder he still called "very important for our team" on Wednesday. Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere are extremely talented but injury prone. Hopefully with a regular place in the starting XI, that will come.

Arsene Wenger has remained adamant so far this summer that Sanchez will not be sold.

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FP: Do you have any advice on how to treat wantaway stars? As always, there have been tons of major transfers this summer, so it will be fun to see players make their debut for their new team. The Gunners already have Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, who combined to tally 32 goals and 19 assists last season, so adding Lacazette gives Wenger's team some serious offensive firepower.

The decision to risk losing them on a free next summer does represent a change of policy though, something which is different from the past when Wenger let the likes of Robin van Persie, Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri depart when their contracts were winding down. It's ominous that Mahrez has been so direct and public about his desire to leave. "I believe he'll become stronger and stronger". At one stage, I opened the door for him as I knew I had many strikers, and in the end he chose to stay. These points dropped have turned out to be really disappointing later on in the season for Arsenal.

FP: Will Arsenal be contending for the title this year? While the League Cup is little regarded, the Europa League provided a ticket into the Champions League - and probably the signature of Lukaku.

In their first huge game of the season, Arsenal travel to Anfield.

A year for Guardiola to show what he is capable of and make this squad into the best.

Hopefully we've all learned something about our opposition today.

"I'm personally convinced that [a female manager in the Premier League] will happen soon", he said.

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