Newcastle United v Arsenal

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Pre-Match Report

Newcastle United v Arsenal: The Brief

What’s your first-choice midfield pairing?

It’s a debate that our fans have been having all over the world and it’s a dilemma that Unai Emery faces every time he picks his team.

Matteo Guendouzi and Granit Xhaka have been regular starters this season, but Lucas Torreira is pushing them hard for a place and Mohamed Elneny - fresh from a goal for Egypt - is waiting for his chance.

Unai talked about the role of the modern midfielder when he sat down with Arsenal Media ahead of the Newcastle game, and you can watch that interview on this page.

You’re also in the right place for team news, match stats and an expert view of our opponents.

Breakdown v Newcastle (a)

Everything you need to know ahead of the Newcastle game

Emery on Ozil
Programme team news

The latest news on our squad ahead of the game

Opposition view

Rafa Benitez's side are yet to win in the league this season, but will pose a stern threat on Saturday afternoon

Arsenal Nation Live

Follow the game with us from 2:30pm (UK time)

Gallery

First-team squad train before facing Newcastle

Mesut Ozil, Granit Xhaka and Henrikh Mkhitaryan in training before the Newcastle game

The international break is over - and we trained for the final time on Friday, ahead of this weekend's trip to Newcastle.

Our club photographer was there, and he sent back these pictures.

Press conference

'Nacho is very important, he needs a new contract'

Unai Emery knew all about Nacho Monreal before taking over as our head coach - and says his compatriot is living up to his high expectations of him.

The Spanish defender is approaching six years at the club and there have been rumours that he could sign a new contract, which our head coach is all in favour of.

"First, I knew Nacho Monreal in Spain when he was playing in Osasuna and at Malaga. After six years here, I came here and I know him as a new Nacho Monreal," Emery said.

"After two weeks, after two months and now, I can say that I am very happy with him because he is 32 years old but I think physically, with his performances with us in matches, he is playing with a very good level. 

"The rest of that, for me, is very important. I think we need to find a new contract with him to stay with the Arsenal team."

Press conference

Emery's press conference: every single word

Unai Emery has presided over the first international break as our head coach - but how did he find it? Find out exactly what he said in his pre-match press conference right here.

The Spaniard discussed the way the team needs to improve, Mesut Ozil, Nacho Monreal and the Auba/Laca partnership.

This is what he said:

on the international break…
Today, the training in the afternoon is the last session. We are going to work with four players. They played on Tuesday, it is Xhaka, Lichtsteiner, Welbeck and Sokratis and I want and I hope that they hope that they come back well and prepare for the match in Newcastle.
 
on where he is looking for the team to improve against Newcastle…
In the process, and firstly we need to win and I think it is very important that in the last match we won. Our aim away at Newcastle on Saturday is to keep improving things and continue to create our idea, build up our spirit on the pitch, individually and collectively, and it is clear this process is one process. Saturday is another step we can do, it will be difficult but I want to continue [to show] our personality on the pitch and impose this personality on the opposition and to find the win.
 
on how Ozil will benefit from retiring from international football…
First the players have the habits to play in the international break, in important matches, defending their identity and when one player is finishing that, I think it is also good for them to focus only on their team. The reason for Mesut is important for me also, this focus every day with us, a relaxing three days off at the weekend. Mesut, like other players, works very well here and also working the ties and also together to improve things. Mesut, I look at him with the focus totally here.
 
on whether he missed international duty this break…
The first time, maybe, he could feel different but every day with us in the work, I look at him and he looks well and happy, working with our demands every day.
 
on his relationship with Ozil…
[We get on] very well. Here for me it isn’t for a lot of the time speaking about what people are telling us. I have a very good relationship with Mesut and professionally I push him for improvements to give us the best in his qualities and performances. Also I read this week in the newspapers in the match against Manchester City I say to the [groundsman], ‘Don’t put water on the pitch’ - it’s not true! This is the moment to say to you that I have a good relationship with Mesut and I didn’t say it to the groundsman not to water on the pitch, it’s not true. We are continuing our process with our positive things and our work.
 

on Ivan Gazidis reportedly speaking to AC Milan… 
First of all, every conversation with him is speaking about us and about our work here every day. I don’t know any other news from him.
 
on Nacho Monreal and reports of a new contract offer...
First, I knew Nacho Monreal in Spain when he was playing in Osasuna and in Malaga. After six years here, I came and I know him as a new Nacho Monreal. After two weeks, after two months and now, I can say that I am very happy with him because he is 32 years old but I think physically, with his performances with us in matches, he is playing with a very good level. The rest of that, for me, is very important. I think we need to find a new contract with him to stay with the Arsenal team.
 
on Aubameyang and Lacazette playing together or as substitutes...

It's the same. It's a process to know the combination on the pitch, with different players but I need and I want to start in the level, 11 players with good performances and also, we need in the balance of players, when the team needs to work in the pitch to help the team to find the win, to stay with the performance. The reason is that I am very happy with the last two victories in the Premier League and also with the performances and I want to push every player to be okay to help the team if for one minute, 30 minutes or half time or 90 minutes.
 
on Ivan Gazidis' future and saying that they talk regularly…
I answered this question and every conversation with me is speaking about us. About our performance. About our ideas. Our process. Then, for his future we didn't speak. I think it's one question for him.

Press conference

How Ozil benefits from international retirement

Mesut Ozil has experienced his first international break over the past two weeks following his decision not to play for the German national team - so how has he found it?

Unai Emery was asked about it in his press conference ahead of Saturday’s trip to face Newcastle - and this is what our head coach said:

on how Ozil will benefit from retiring from international football…
First the players have the habits to play in the international break, in important matches, defending their identity and when one player is finishing that, I think it is also good for them to focus only on their team. The reason for Mesut is important for me also, this focus every day with us, a relaxing three days off at the weekend. Mesut, like other players, works very well here and also working the ties and also together to improve things. Mesut, I look at him with the focus totally here.

on whether he missed international duty this break…
The first time, maybe, he could feel different but every day with us in the work, I look at him and he looks well and happy, working with our demands every day.

on his relationship with Ozil…
[We get on] very well. Here for me it isn’t for a lot of the time speaking about what people are telling us. I have a very good relationship with Mesut and professionally I push him for improvements to give us the best in his qualities and performances. Also I read this week in the newspapers in the match against Manchester City I say to the [groundsman], ‘Don’t put water on the pitch’ - it’s not true! This is the moment to say to you that I have a good relationship with Mesut and I didn’t say it to the groundsman not to water on the pitch, it’s not true. We are continuing our process with our positive things and our work.

Team news

Team news: Iwobi, Ainsley and Kolasinac

Alex Iwobi

Ahead of Unai Emery’s media conference on Thursday, here's the latest team news update from our medical team.

All players have returned from international duty with their national teams in good health and are available for selection.
 
Alex Iwobi
Missed Cardiff City (a) with illness. Back in full training.
 
Sead Kolasinac
Left knee injury. Progressing well and now expected to return to full training in early October (initially aiming to return during the month of October). 
 
Ainsley Maitland-Niles
Small fracture to left fibula. Progressing well and now expected to return to full training in early October (initially aiming to return to training in November). 
 
Carl Jenkinson 
Significant sprain to right ankle. Aiming to return to training in October/November. 
 
Laurent Koscielny 
Right Achilles tendon repair. Started working outside. Aiming to return to full training in November.

Press conference

Emery on the break, Aubameyang and Lacazette

Unai Emery was asked about a range of subjects at his press conference ahead of the game against Newcastle United on Saturday.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette remain a hot topic, while our head coach was also quizzed about the way he wants his team to improve.

This is what he told the media:

on the international break…
Today, the training in the afternoon is the last session. We are going to work with four players. They played on Tuesday, it is Xhaka, Lichtsteiner, Welbeck and Sokratis and I want and I hope that they hope that they come back well and prepare for the match in Newcastle.

on where he is looking for the team to improve against Newcastle…
In the process, and firstly we need to win and I think it is very important that in the last match we won. Our aim away at Newcastle on Saturday is to keep improving things and continue to create our idea, build up our spirit on the pitch, individually and collectively, and it is clear this process is one process. Saturday is another step we can do, it will be difficult but I want to continue [to show] our personality on the pitch and impose this personality on the opposition and to find the win.

on Ivan Gazidis reportedly speaking to AC Milan… 
First of all, every conversation with him is speaking about us and about our work here every day. I don’t know any other news from him.

on Gazidis' future and saying that they talk regularly…
I answered this question and every conversation with me is speaking about us. About our performance. About our ideas. Our process. Then, for his future we didn't speak. I think it's one question for him.

on Aubameyang and Lacazette playing together or as substitutes...
It's the same. It's a process to know the combination on the pitch, with different players but I need and I want to start in the level, 11 players with good performances and also, we need in the balance of players, when the team needs to work in the pitch to help the team to find the win, to stay with the performance. The reason is that I am very happy with the last two victories in the Premier League and also with the performances and I want to push every player to be okay to help the team if for one minute, 30 minutes or half time or 90 minutes.

Fixtures

Carabao Cup
Ticket Info
Premier League
Ticket Info

Results

Premier League
Europa League