Arsenal at Blackpool Injury Report: Ozil, Bellerin, Monreal, Mustafi, Tilt, Turton

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Arsenal FC begin their FA Cup campaign by visiting a Blackpool side (2-1) that they have already beaten in the League Cup this season. So Gunners manager Unai Emery must be feeling pretty good about the chance to rest some of his starters and rotate his squad on Saturday, and still come away with a big win.

Given all the injuries that they are currently dealing with, this opportunity will be warmly welcomed. “We are going to be competitive. The priority is the next match, and that’s Blackpool. I am going to play with the players to be competitive,” said Arsenal manager Unai Emery.

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“If we need some young players to do one mix, but finding this power to be stronger with them, we will do it. The priority now is Blackpool.”

Let’s assess the fitness situation for both sides. In regards to the Tangerines, Curtis Tilt, Ollie Turton, Jimmy Ryan (knee), Max Clayton (hamstring) and Mark Cullen (leg fracture) are all doubtful.

For Arsenal, attacking midfielder Mesut Ozil (missed the last two games due to a knee injury) as well as defenders Hector Bellerin (calf muscle problem), Nacho Monreal (hamstring issue) and Shkodran Mustafi (hamstring problem) all missed the team’s training session yesterday.

The Gunners will also be without long term injury absentees Rob Holding, Danny Welbeck and Henrik Mkhitaryan. Meanwhile  Konstantinos Mavropanos has returned to training, having recovered from a groin problem while forward Emile Smith Rowe is moving closer towards full fitness.

Arsenal at Blackpool FYIs

Arsenal FC Starting XI Prediction: go to this link

Kick-off: 12:30 pm (BST), Saturday January 5, Bloomfield Road

Odds via Bet 365: Arsenal win- 1/5, draw- 11/2, Blackpool win- 12/1

Prediction: Arsenal 2, Blackpool 1

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation. 

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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