Eddie Nketiah and Bukayo Saka return and Rob Holding starts – How Arsenal and Aston Villa should line-up

Arsenal may now have an FA Cup final to look forward to but they can also finish as high as sixth in the Premier League.

Two wins from their final two matches would give them 59 points and could see them claim a first finish above rivals Tottenham since 2015/16.

Arsenal have surprised many with their last two performances

Getty Images

Arsenal have surprised many with their last two performances

No doubt, though, manager Mikel Arteta is now planning for his August 1 date at Wembley with Chelsea and will want to ensure his first choice XI is as fit as possible.

This means we could see some changes from the side which battled so bravely and showed so much spirit against both Liverpool and Manchester City in the last two matches.

But they’re about to come up against another team who are showing some fight at the right time of the season.

Aston Villa are their opponents – live on talkSPORT – and a win and a draw in their last two games have given them some hope of survival.

Aston Villa celebrate during a rare victory against Crystal Palace


Aston Villa celebrate during a rare victory against Crystal Palace

The Villans could even get out of the bottom three with a victory of 4-0 and above but manager Dean Smith will also be wary any defeat would see their already inferior goal difference take a further hit.

There is a thin line between success and failure at this juncture and the Midlanders have to have a perfectly balanced performance to get what they need against tough opponents.

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Aston Villa team news

Smith welcomes back Kortney Hause for the vital Premier League clash with Arsenal, he had been absent with a rib injury but is fit again, though Neil Taylor (hamstring) is out.

Bjorn Engels will miss the final two matches of the season with his Achilles problem, while Tom Heaton and Wesley (both knee) are long-term injury victims.

How Aston Villa should look…

Arsenal team news

Arsenal will be without Shkodran Mustafi for the trip to Villa Park.

The defender suffered a hamstring injury in the FA Cup semi-final win over Manchester City in a clash with Raheem Sterling and will miss the game.
Cedric Soares is available after being cup-tied, Eddie Nketiah returns following suspension but Pablo Mari (ankle), Bernd Leno, Gabriel Martinelli and Calum Chambers (all knee) are definite absentees.

How Arsenal should look…

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