7 min: Arsenal 0 Leeds 0
Odegaard’s loose pass is picked off by Summerville who drives forward and tackles to the right from the center. White comes all the way over from left-back to first stall him and then tackle him.
5 min: Arsenal 0 Leeds 0
Actually Kristensen seems to me to be more in midfield when Leeds don’t have the ball. Summerville is left, Sinisterra right and Aaronson as a kind of false nine.
3 min: Arsenal 0 Leeds 0
White is starting incidentally. Xhaka is down after bumping Ayling and bruising one of his knees with the other. He’s OK. Leeds are playing with five at the back, Kristensen and Firpo as wing-backs, Ayling tucked in.
1 min : Arsenal 0 Leeds 0
Leeds pour down the right from the kickoff in a tribute to Bournemouth and Krsitansen absolutely leathers a right-foot shot that Ramsdale saves low to his right after Zinchenko’s slip let Sinisterra in.
Arsenal break straightaway and make progress down the middle, Struijk and Koch just doing enough to block Gabriel Jesus’ shot.
The teams are out
Arsenal in their home kit, Leeds in their tribute to Stilton.
Leeds’ starting XI
All about legs and the desire to hit Arsenal on the break. Kristensen may make it five at the back or be used in midfield to help Ayling with his pal, Martinelli. Hard to say which way Leeds will go at the start.
Sam Dean has spotted a potential injury problem for Arsenal
This could be absolutely nothing, but Ben White left the warm-up before the other Arsenal players and walked down the tunnel with the club doctor. At this stage there can be no telling what happened. Might be something as simple as him requiring more strapping. Who knows? But if it is a problem, that is a significant issue for Arsenal, who are already without backup right-back Takehiro Tomiyasu because of a knee injury.
The reason for Saka’s absence
Arsenal have confirmed that the winger was feeling unwell and did not train yesterday. Neither Gabriel Martinelli nor Gabriel Jesus were away with Brazil during the break, and Jesus makes his first Premier League start since before the World Cup.
The two teams
Preview: Impregnable Emirates for Leeds?
Good afternoon and welcome to live coverage of Arsenal vs Leeds United from the Emirates where the visitors have never won, losing five times and drawing once on their trips in league and Cup since the Gunners moved from Highbury. It was a curious game last season. Leeds were battered in the first half and went down to 10 men when Luke Ayling, frustrated by Gabriel Martinelli’s skinning of him, got himself sent off after 27 minutes with his side 2-0 down. But Arsenal failed to press down their advantage and although Leeds barely improved, they clawed one back and could/should have stolen a point with Rodrigo’s late header.
During the match at Elland Road earlier this season which featured a 40-minute hiatus for VAR to be rebooted, Leeds actually rattled Arsenal in the second half after Rodrigo had made a gift of a goal to Bukayo Saka with the hospital pass of all hospital passes . Patrick Bamford missed a penalty and another very good chance to equalize and VAR rose from the dead to chalk off a stoppage-time penalty awarded to the home side for a Bamford collision with Gabriel that the Leeds centre-forward ultimately was deemed to have initiated.
So Leeds travel with some hope from recent performances … and none at all given their record there – and Arsenal’s recent show of resilience and brilliance since rallying against Aston Villa to win 4-2 and start a run of six successive wins that has fortified their lead at the top of the Premier League and brought a first title for 19 years closer.
They will start today without Takehiro Tomiyasu, Mohamed Elneny, Eddie Nketiah and William Saliba, but Thomas Partey and Kieran Tierney should be OK. Leeds lost their two best players since Christmas – Max Wöber and Willy Gnonto – to injury while on international duty, Tyler Adams is touch and go to return before the end of the season while Stuart Dallas and Adam Forshaw are still some way off.