Ikel Arteta will mix youth and experience when selecting his Arsenal side to face Lyon in the Dubai Super Cup.
A handful of players remain unavailable while continuing their path to World Cup glory in Qatar, such as Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli.
Also, the tournament knockouts will not feature with Takehiro Tomiyasu in particular asking for a break from football after Japan’s heartbreak against Croatia in the Round of 16.
Granit Xhaka flew directly from Qatar to Arsenal’s camp across the desert but is highly unlikely to play against Lyon.
Arsenal await his return with a mid-season trip to Dubai for a warm-weather training camp in the first of three friendlies.
Already, the Gunners have had a behind-closed-doors game with Watford which could shed some light on Arteta’s approach to this week’s fixtures.
Martin Odegaard, Gabriel Magalhaes and Eddie Nketiah all started the 4-2 loss before a team of academy players entered the fray after the break.
This included Nathan Butler-Oyedeji, Ethan Nwaneri and Lino Sousa. Given the youngsters conceded three unanswered goals against Watford, they will likely have to settle for substitute appearances again in Lyon’s friendly.
Predicted Arsenal XI: Eh; Cedric, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Elneny, Lokonga, Odegaard; Nelson, Nketiah, Marquinhos.