Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will have the chance to cast his eye over peripheral members of his squad during the World Cup break. Friendlies have already been scheduled at the Dubai Super Cup next month, which will see the Gunners pitted against Lyon and AC Milan. With several of the squad’s standout stars set to be preoccupied in Qatar, Express Sport takes you through four players who could provide Arteta with food for thought before Premier League action resumes…
Signed as a youngster from Bolton, 27-year-old Holding is now a senior member of the Arsenal dressing room. The centre-back has caps at England U21 level but he was never in with a shout of making Gareth Southgate’s senior squad, meaning he is sure to take part in the Gunners’ trip to Dubai instead.
Impressive performances will be a must from Holding if he is to stand any chance of barging his way into the XI, given that William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes have formed a formidable partnership at the back so far this term.
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Emile Smith Rowe
Playfully termed ‘the Croydon De Bruyne’, Smith Rowe has long been one of the crown jewels of Arsenal’s new wave of academy stars. Capped by England and into double figures with 10 Premier League goals in 2021/22, the youngster’s momentum took a huge hit when he required groin surgery in September.
Yet to register a start, a goal or an assist for the Gunners this season, Smith Rowe will be itching to get back amongst the action. With his return scheduled for the end of November, big performances in Dubai will be a must due to the high-flying form of Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka.