It is a little bit premature to say that this first game in the Champions League group stage is a must win for Arsenal, but it is very important for the Gunners to get off to a good start in the group of death, and Arsene Wenger will have targeted the French side as one they should aim to take six points from.
Arsenal are going for an incredible 10th straight away win, and will be boosted by the inclusion of Olivier Giroud and Mesut Ozil in the starting line up. The pair seemed to be forging an understanding in their first game together at Sunderland, so let’s hope that continues tonight.
Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs
Walcott, Ozil, Wilshere
A repeat of the under-19s 4 – 1 win earlier would do very nicely indeed, but I don’t think this game is going to be as simple as many fans seem to think. I do expect Marseille to attack, though, and that should leave plenty of room for Arsenal’s many creative players to do their thing. Walcott’s pace down the right could be a key element, and if the England international can find his shooting boots tonight, I think he could fill them, so to speak.
Arsenal’s bench is not very reassuring, so we could do without anyone picking up a knock, especially early on. I expect a few goals, and for the Gunners to edge it, maybe 3 -2.