Arsenal verdict: Hugely changed side gives Arteta dilemmas for Liverpool as they prove battle is on for Prem and Europe

ARSENAL proved they can compete on both fronts on a night when European football returned to the Emirates.

The Gunners are now eight straight home wins in a streak stretching back to last season.

Kieran Tierney and Eddie Nketiah have both staked their claim on the squad, with both playing well

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Kieran Tierney and Eddie Nketiah have both staked their claim on the squad, with both playing wellPhoto credit: Reuters
Takehiro Tomiyasu also impressed on his return to the team

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Takehiro Tomiyasu also impressed on his return to the teamPhoto credit: Getty
Fabio Vieira grabbed a goal and an assist to give Mikel Arteta pause

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Fabio Vieira grabbed a goal and an assist to give Mikel Arteta pausePhoto credit: Getty

Bodo/Glimt were no match for the Premier League leaders and although Mikel Arteta made eight changes from the side that beat Tottenham on Saturday, Arsenal did not lose the spark.

Summer signing Fabio Vieira was heavily involved in attack but it’s Kieran Tierney and Takehiro Tomiyasu who will give their manager pause – for all the right reasons.

Bodo/Glimt could have been a banana peel for the Gunners and were appropriately clad in a bright yellow stripe, but they showed no sign of repeating last season’s famous win over Roma in north London.

Arsenal scored twice in the first half but could have scored a lot more had it not been for a poor finish, with Eddie Nketiah and Vieira close.

It’s reassuring for Arteta that despite so many changes, his team looked skilled and well organized, with five substitutes also scoring a third goal in the second half when Vieira struck home.

It also bodes well for the remainder of their Europa League season, with a packed fixture list next month that includes games against Liverpool and Chelsea.

Arteta’s priority will be to maintain a title fight but with trips to Bodo/Glimt and PSV Eindhoven imminent he will need to rely on his squad strength.

That has improved significantly thanks to wise investments over the summer and with Thomas Partey, William Saliba and Oleksandr Zinchenko well rested Arsenal will be fresh for the trip to Anfield on Sunday.

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Zinchenko has been left out of the squad but only as a precaution and he could be up for selection after the Spurs game.

But the Ukrainian’s place in the team is far from assured as Tierney proves his class against the Norwegians.

He advanced well and almost scored but it’s his pace and tenacity that could get him a start on Sunday as he may be the best man to deal with Mo Salah.

Tomiyasu could also get the nod for similar reasons, although Ben White has been flawless at right-back this season and Arteta might not want to risk switching a defense that has never looked so strong.

It’s causing quite a headache for the Spain boss and his team selection could depend on how he wants to line up at Anfield, with White and Zinchenko holding the ball better than Tomiyasu and Tierney.

Luckily for Arteta, he also has plenty of options in attack, with Vieira playing a starring role against Bodo/Glimt.

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Nketiah and Vieira call for more prem action for a convincing win

The Portuguese scored one goal and one assist but is unlikely to start ahead of captain Martin Odegaard but he and Eddie Nketiah are potential match winners who can also play a role off the bench.

That depth will come in handy for Arsenal in big games this season, including the final stages of the Europa League – a competition the Gunners believe they can win after tonight’s show.

https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6386496/arsenal-verdict-arteta-liverpool-europa-league/ Arsenal verdict: Hugely changed side gives Arteta dilemmas for Liverpool as they prove battle is on for Prem and Europe

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