Premier League football resumes as Arsenal travel to Anfield on Wednesday night with hopes of maintaining their slender lead at the top, while an injury-stricken Liverpool side may embrace even a stalemate, given their shyness in front of goal.
Arsene Wenger and Jurgen Klopp both fielded a squad that contained more future stars than first-team regulars though the latter did not have another choice during the FA Cup third round. The French manager is certain to rotate his squad ahead of the high-profile clash with first-team personnel coming back into the squad after a much-deserved rest.
The former Chelsea goaltender filled the shoes of David Ospina in the third round Football Association Cup fixture thanks to a late injury picked up by the Colombian and thus, the probability of him being benched has become equal to that of Aston Villa avoiding relegation this season.
The 20-year-old fullback finally put on a show at Ashburton Grove on Saturday afternoon after a few lacklustre performances and will surely keep his place. With Mathieu Debuchy attempting to engineer a move to Roma, the Spaniard has only himself to fight with for a place in the starting lineup.
Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker
Gabriel Paulista did not have a bad game against the Rokerites, but will be demoted to bench in order to make room for Per Mertesacker. Even though Laurent Koscielny had a Johan Djourou moment against Jeremain Lens, he still bears the undroppable status in the Arsenal team.
Kieran Gibbs had a game to remember (and a moment to forget) at Emirates Stadium last weekend, but he failed to impress enough to keep his place. The Spanish international, who has been impressive this season, will come back into the starting lineup.
Mathieu Flamini and Aaron Ramsey
In the absence of Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla, midfield duo Mathieu Flamini and Aaron Ramsey have established themselves as automatic starters. The Welsh midfielder changed the momentum of the game after being introduced in the second half against Sunderland and will be expected to do the same at Anfield.