Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest: Team news, predicted line-ups, when & where to watch as the Gunners seek to begin Premier League campaign with victory

Mikel Arteta Arsenal manager || Photo Credit: Imago

FOOTBALL Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest: Team news, predicted line-ups, when & where to watch as the Gunners seek to begin Premier League campaign with victory

Joel Omotto 09:19 - 12.08.2023

Arsenal start their Premier League season at home for the first time in five years and Mike Arteta is hoping for another positive beginning as he eyes the title

Arsenal start their 2023/24 Premier League campaign at home for the first time in five years when they host Nottingham Forest for a lunchtime kick-off.

Having clinched the Community Shield last Sunday at Wembley, Mikel Arteta will be hoping to pick up where we left off at Wembley and embark on a similar start to last season, which provided the springboard to their title challenge.

Arsenal welcome a Forest side who picked up the fewest away points in the division last term, and Steve Cooper will be well aware they must improve their away day displays if they’re to avoid being sucked into another relegation battle.

Just 84 days will have passed since Cooper’s team beat Arsenal 1-0 to clinch their Premier League status, as he attempts to become the first Forest boss to record consecutive victories over the Gunners since Brian Clough in 1978.

Forest’s transfer dealings

After signing 29 first-team players last season, Forest’s summer transfer dealings have been relatively tame in comparison. Manchester United's Anthony Elanga was joined at the club by Matt Turner earlier this week, who is expected to line up against his former side on Saturday, having lifted the Community Shield with us just six days earlier.

Former Chelsea defender Ola Aina is the other major new face, while Chris Wood’s loan move from Newcastle United has been made permanent. Jesse Lingard, Jack Colback, Andre Ayew, Sam Surridge, Cafu and Steve Cook are the biggest-name departures.

On the pitch, results have been disappointing. They won just two of their seven friendlies, which came against Notts County and Levante. As well as defeats to Valencia and PSV Eindhoven, alarmingly they were beaten 2-0 by relegated Leeds United and 5-0 by Rennes, and netted just three times all summer.

What have they said?

“I’m super excited, I think it’s a new challenge and a new opportunity. We’re very fresh to start again and we’re excited to play our first game at home as it’s been a while,” said Arteta.

“[Forest beat us last season] in a really clever way and they deserved on the day to get the points. Tomorrow (Saturday) we’re going to have to play better to deserve more.”

Steve Cooper said: “We are pleased with the players who have come in. Would we have liked to do more business by now? Absolutely. Me, for sure.

“But at the same time, as I always do, I will commit to the guys who are here and make sure they get everything we can give them, to help them prepare for a game. If we can strengthen and add to the squad in the next few weeks then that is going to be really beneficial to help us progress.”

Team news

Mikel Arteta has given the majority of his squad a clean bill of health, with the exception of Mohamed Elneny who continues to rehab the knee injury he suffered back in January, and Gabriel Jesus who underwent a procedure on his knee and is expected to be out for a couple more weeks.

That means that Jorginho could return after missing the Wembley win last week with a knock, as well as Oleksandr Zincheko who didn’t play during pre-season as he managed a calf problem.

Taiwo Awoniyi, who was in red-hot form at the end of last season and netted the winner against Arsenal in May, is set to miss out having not recovered from an ankle issue in time. This game also comes too soon for centre-back Moussa Niakhate whose dislocated shoulder hasn’t fully healed.

The pair are back in training, as is Brennan Johnson who is expected to play after picking up an ankle injury on Wales duty earlier in the summer. Defender Felipe is out though with a knee problem.

Predicted line-ups

Arsenal possible starting lineup: Ramsdale; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Timber; Odegaard, Partey, Rice; Saka, Trossard, Martinelli.

Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup: Turner; Worrall, Boly, McKenna; Aurier, Yates, Danilo, Mangala, Aina; Gibbs-White, Johnson.

When & where to watch

The match will kick off at 2.30pm Kenyan time and will be live on SuperSport TV.