Three ways Arsenal can line up vs Leicester as Mikel Arteta attempts to solve Gabriel problem

Arsenal’s centre-back White could be benched for Arsenal’s match against Leicester, but there are options for Mikel Arteta.

In the event that Ben White is unavailable, Mikel Arteta will have a major Arsenal challenge to address against Leicester.

After complaining of an issue, the defender was forced to retire from the Carabao Cup match against Leeds United.


The injury did not appear to be significant, but during his pre-match press conference, Arteta put doubt on White’s inclusion by disclosing that the former Brighton & Hove Albion defender had not trained ahead of the encounter at the King Power Stadium.

“He hasn’t trained yet,” he explained, “so we’ll have to see how he feels and how he is.”

Arteta will have to find a new partner for Brazilian Gabriel Magalhaes if he is forced to sit out. That task has been made considerably more difficult by the fact that Pablo Mari and Kierney are both questionable for the game.

Rob Holding

Holding might be brought back into the starting lineup despite not having played a minute of Premier League football since the 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Manchester City.

The former Bolton Wanderers defender excelled during Arsenal’s midweek win over Leeds United, and he’ll be eager to show Arteta that he can start in the Premier League.

He’s also one of only two traditional center-backs available if both Mari and White are injured, thus his presence may be forced rather than voluntary.

Calum Chambers

In a similar vein to Holding, the ex-Southampton midfielder has seen little action for Arsenal this season.

His last Premier League appearance, like Holding’s, was in the Manchester City disaster. He came off the bench in the win over Norwich and has not to appear in a league matchday squad since then.

Chambers, on the other hand, made an immediate impact in the win over Leeds, scoring with his first touch.

In the absence of White, that may not be enough to drive him to first-choice defense, but it certainly offers Arteta something to think about.

Takehiro Tomiyasu

If the Spaniard chooses to stick with the tried and true, Gabriel may be paired with Takehiro Tomiyasu.


The Japanese international has been playing at right-back since arriving from Bologna, but he can also play in the middle of the defense.


Arteta said after his deal was completed that he might play at centre-back.

He said: “We followed him for a while. We needed a full-back who could be very versatile, can play as a centre-back, can play in a back three, Tomi has this capacity.”


If that option is chosen, it will, of course, necessitate right-hand switch. 
The aforementioned Chambers could easily fill in at right-back, while Cedric Soares could fill in if Tomiyasu is moved to more central position.

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