Ninth place Everton travel to the Emirates this Saturday evening as Theo Walcott makes his first return to the Emirates since his January move to Goodison Park.
Though Arsenal had an impressive January in terms of transfers, Arsene Wenger’s side are in desperate need of a result having won only two of their seven games this month.
Earlier this week, Arsenal suffered arguably their worst loss of the season to Premier League strugglers Swansea City and will be keen to return to winning ways against Sam Allardyce’s side.
Everton will come into the game in good spirits having beaten Leicester City, who sit one place above them in the league, during the week.
Arsenal’s first game since the end of busy transfer window
Having had a successful last few days in the transfer window, Wenger can finally turn his full attention to the league, as the Gunners play their first game since the transfer window shut.
Saturday’s game against the Toffees could see a full debut for new signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan as well as Arsenal’s record signing, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Mkhitaryan played the last 30 minutes during the defeat at Swansea, however, he is likely to make his full debut this Saturday at the Emirates as the Armenian international is tipped to start.
After what felt like an age, Aubameyang finally became an Arsenal player on transfer deadline day after a week or so of negotiations.
Having been given the iconic number 14 shirt, famously worn by Arsenal’s top goal-scorer, Thierry Henry, all eyes will be on the Gabon international this Saturday as he potentially makes his debut at the Emirates.
Mesut Ozil expected to lead by example after signing new deal
Not only did the Gunners sign Aubameyang on transfer deadline day, Mesut Özil signed a new contract keeping him at the club until 2021, which would put the German playmaker into his seventh year in North London.
Wenger has spoken out since Ozil signed the contract and claims he now has to become a leader within this Arsenal side, in their challenge to qualify for Champions League football.
Since his arrival in the Premier League, no player has created more goal-scoring chances than Arsenal’s number 11 and the arrivals of creative players such as Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang can only enhance the German’s game.
Walcott returns to the Emirates
Following his January departure from the Emirates, Walcott will return to face his former club having only played two games for the Toffees.
The English international impressed last time out, as he netted twice to get off the mark for Everton against Leicester.
Having been Arsenal’s longest serving player before he decided to make the switch to Goodison Park, a good reception is to be expected for Arsenal’s former number 14.
Danny Welbeck has not returned to full fitness just yet and will miss out completely on Saturday, whereas Jack Wilshere and Aubameyang face late fitness tests having both reported sick.
Mkhitaryan is fully fit and Wenger has claimed he has fulfilled is match sharpness and is in line to start.
Everton will be without Leighton Baines, James McCarthy, Ramiro Funes Mori and Maarten Stekelenburg through injury.