DAILY MAIL 🔵 Arsenal boss Arteta had to change his ways and rotate against Luton – Shango Media
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DAILY MAIL 🔵 Arsenal boss Arteta had to change his ways and rotate against Luton

Mikel Arteta has a penchant for consistency. Just a couple of tweaks, at maximum, is the protocol for his Arsenal line-up.

It is why the five changes made for Luton on Wednesday surprised many.

Not because it didn’t make sense, but because it is not within Arteta’s usual modus operandi. Just like the Spaniard’s reluctance to play youth in the first team.

Looking at the bigger picture, it was this success in rotation which in many ways superseded winning 2-0 against Luton.

Such team selection is so crucial ahead of a congested month which sees Arsenal play two games a week in April, including two Champions League legs against Bayern Munich.

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta rotated his line-up against Luton on Wednesday night

Forward Emile Smith Rowe impressed on a rare start for Arsenal at the Emirates

If the Gunners are to achieve their dreams and more, it is the groundwork made now which will pay dividends by the end.

Emile Smith Rowe, who has previously struggled with injury and was linked to Chelsea in the summer transfer window, shone on a rare appearance.

The midfielder’s tackle and pass led to Martin Odegaard’s opening goal, and his cross caused Daiki Hashioka to turn the ball into his own net.

He could well have a part to play in the weeks to come.

Reiss Nelson, who had not started a Premier League game since July 2020 against Liverpool, was given a chance and looked lively at times. 

Not to the level his team require, but signs of promise nevertheless.

And then Thomas Partey made a first start since his long-term injury. 

For the first time since August, bar long-term absentee Jurrien Timber, the Gunners have a full-strength squad to pick from.

Midfielder Thomas Partey also returned to the starting line-up after recovering from injury

Reiss Nelson (above) started a Premier League game for the first time since July 2020

Just a handful of the names on the bench, including Jorginho, Declan Rice and Gabriel Martinelli, as well as Bukayo Saka, who was not even in the squad, reflects the sheer strength in depth Arsenal have.

Every one of the north London club’s squad will be required in some way before the end of May.

For now, the signs towards silverware are very promising.

Champions LeagueMikel Arteta



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