By Arsenal correspondent Tony Hughes
Arsene Wenger has three selection dilemmas ahead of Arsenal’s showdown against Leicester on Sunday.
The manager is weighing up who to partner first-choice centre-back Laurent Koscielny, whether Francis Coquelin should be handed his first league start in three months and which of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott and Joel Campbell should get the nod.
The greater mobility of Gabriel is likely to prove decisive in his battle with Per Mertesacker for the central defender place.
The Brazilian has started the last two league matches and his recovery pace could prove decisive against Leicester’s Jamie Vardy-led counter-attacks.
Midfield enforcer Coquelin made his comeback in the FA Cup win over Burnley a fortnight ago, playing 71 minutes of the Gunners’ 2-1 win.
Coquelin made way for Mathieu Flamini in the subsequent league matches against Southampton and Bournemouth, although the 24-year-old did make substitute appearances in both games.
Arsene Wenger is now weighing up whether to start Coquelin against the league leaders at Emirates Stadium on Sunday. In the absence of Coquelin and Santi Cazorla over the last two months, Flamini and Aaron Ramsey have been the first-choice central midfield partnership.
However, Coquelin is highly regarded by Wenger and if he is deemed match fit after his gradual reintroduction into the team, Flamini might make way.
In the attacking midfield positions, Wenger must choose between Oxlade-Chamberlain, who scored his first ever away goal for Arsenal last weekend, Walcott and Campbell to support key pair Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez.
The Chilean scored a hat-trick when the two sides played in the reverse fixture in late September, which Arsenal won 5-2, a match in which Walcott spearhead the attack and opened the scoring.
Arsenal (possible): Cech; Bellerin, Gabriel, Koscielny, Monreal; Coquelin, Ramsey; Walcott, Ozil, Sanchez; Giroud.