Premier League leaders Arsenal will be hoping to maintain their momentum when they face Sporting CP in the first leg of their Europa League Round of 16 tie on Thursday.
The Gunners recently claimed a dramatic come-from-behind 3-2 win in the league against Bournemouth which has seen them stay five points clear of second-place Manchester City.
While Sporting aren’t exactly flying high in Portugal, they have found form recently and have won their past three games without conceding a goal.
Without a number of key attackers, Arsenal could well struggle to break down their opponents away from home in this first leg.
LIVE BLOG: Follow along with the match as Arsenal travel to Lisbon in the Europa League
Arsenal vs Sporting CP lineups
Mikel Arteta was handed a fresh injury blow against Bournemouth with attacker Leandro Trossard forced off in the first half with a groin injury.
That leaves Arsenal even shorter up front with Gabriel Jesus yet to return after knee surgery and Eddie Nketiah in doubt after missing their last match with an ankle concern. Jesus reportedly was set to travel with the team, indicating his return is close, but he does not appear in the matchday squad and ultimately didn’t make the trip.
Aside from that, Mohamed Elneny is the only other confirmed absentee after he also underwent a knee operation. Emile Smith Rowe was notably substituted off as a substitute against Bournemouth, casting doubt over if and how he’ll be involved in this contest, and he starts on the bench with Reiss Nelson seeing the field instead.
Sporting, meanwhile, come into this contest with far fewer injuries with only midfielders Daniel Braganca and Manuel Ugarte definitely out.
Pedro Goncalves has starred for them in front of goal, netting 16 goals in all competitions, while former Tottenham academy product Marcus Edwards has also struck 10 times.
MORE: When did Arsenal last win the Premier League?
Arsenal confirmed starting 11
Arsenal starting XI (4-3-3): Turner (GK) — White, Saliba, Kiwior, Zinchenko — Jorginho, Vieira, Xhaka — Saka, Martinelli, Nelson.
Arsenal subs (11): Ramsdale (GK), Hillson, Tomiyasu, Walters, Holding, Gabriel, Partey, Smith, Bandeira, Smith Rowe, Sagoe Jr.
- Injuries: Jesus, Elneny, Trossard, Tierney.
- Suspensions: None.
Arteta comes into this game without a recognised out-and-out striker with Gabriel Martinelli most likely to lead the line with Bournemouth match-winner Reiss Nelson promoted to a starting spot. Matt Turner continues in goal as the team’s Cup starter.
Jorginho didn’t feature last time out and could be primed for game time against Sporting with the former more likely to start, with Thomas Partey rested. Kieran Tierney is ill and did not travel, while Martin Odegaard is also under the weather but at least made the trip with the squad.
Sporting CP projected starting 11
Sporting CP starting XI (3-4-3): Adan (GK) — St. Juste, Coates, Inacio — Esgaio, Goncalves, Morita, Matheus — Trincao, Paulinho, Edwards.
Sporting CP subs (11): Neto (GK), Diomande, Nuno, M. Fernandes, Tanlongo, Essugo, Issahaku, Chermiti, Rochinha, Cabral, Arthur.
- Injuries: Daniel Braganca.
- Suspensions: Ugarte.
Sporting midfielder Manuel Ugarte triggered a yellow card suspension with his caution last time out against Midtjylland and will miss this match. The only true injury concern for head coach Ruben Amara is the ACL tear of 23-year-old Daniel Braganca who has missed the entire season to date.
The Sporting lineup is a very attacking selection, as in-form attacker Pedro Goncalves drops into midfield to fit Trincao in the attack alongside Paulinho and England-born Marcus Edwards. Former Arsenal full-back Hector Bellerin is at Sporting on loan from Barcelona but does not make the matchday squad.
Striker Paulinho was used as a substitute over the weekend but still managed to score the required goal in a 1-0 win to stake his claim for a start here. Sporting will be captained by former Premier League centre-back Sebastian Coates, who is now into his eighth straight season with the club.
Arsenal vs Sporting CP live stream, TV channel
Here’s how to watch all of the action from this match in some of the major territories:
|USA||TUDN||fuboTV, TUDN app/site,
|UK||BT Sport 2||BT Sport app/site|
|New Zealand||—||Spark Sport|
|India||Sony TEN 2||JioTV, Sony LIV|
|Hong Kong||beIN Sports 3||beIN Sports Connect|
|Malaysia||beIN Sports 3||
beIN Sports Connect
|Singapore||beIN Sports 3||beIN Sports Connect,
UK: This match will be broadcast live in the UK via BT Sports’ TV and streaming services.
USA: This match streams on Paramount+ and fuboTV for subscribers in both English and Spanish.
Canada: Every Europa League game this season is live streaming exclusively via DAZN in Canada.
Australia: Fans in Australia can stream every Europa League match live and on demand on Stan Sport.
MORE: Watch every Premier League match live with fuboTV in Canada
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