Arsene Wenger
Wenger named strong squad for US trip. Getty


  • Didier Drogba, Andrea Pirlo and Kaka are among options in MLS side.
  • Gunners drew their opening pre-season game against Lens last Friday.

Arsenal are in California for their second pre-season game of the summer, taking on the very best Major League Soccer have to offer.

Andrea Pirlo, Kaka, Didier Drogba and, erm, Liam Ridgewell, are in the MLS squad for Friday's (29 July) clash at the Avaya Stadium in San Jose, with Arsene Wenger bringing a strong squad along after Friday's (22 July) draw with RC Lens.

Alexis Sanchez, Aaron Ramsey Mesut Ozil, Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud are still enjoying their summer holidays after lengthy Copa America and Euro 2016 campaigns, while Per Mertesacker has joined Danny Welbeck on the injury list.

So what XI will Wenger field? IBTimes UK considers the options.

Petr Cech (Goalkeeper)

After Damien Martinez and Matt Macey shared duties against Lens, both Petr Cech and David Ospina are back available after their summer breaks.

Hector Bellerin (Right-back)

The 21-year-old can come back in at right-back, having returned to the squad following Spain's ill-fated Euro 2016 campaign. Mathieu Debuchy is also available.

Gabriel (Centre-half)

With Laurent Koscielny still on his break after France's Euro 2016 heartbreak, the Brazilian suddenly becomes the club's senior option at centre-half. Who will partner him?

Rob Holding (Centre-half)

Arsenal's third summer recruit, after Granit Xhaka and Takuma Asano, 18-year-old Holding could have an early chance to slot in at his preferred position. Francis Coquelin could be another option, however, after the Frenchman revealed via Snapchat he has been training at centre-half this week.

Francis Coquelin
Coquelin has been training at centre-half since news of Per Mertesacker's injury. Getty

Kieran Gibbs (Left-back)

Both Gibbs and Nacho Monreal immediately returned to training following their summer break, having no international commitments. As was the case in the game against Lens, both players are likely to play a half each in California.

Santi Cazorla (Centre midfield)

There had been a distinct lack of Santi Cazorla in training pictures released by Arsenal the week preceding their game against Lens, despite the Spaniard revealing via Twitter on 4 July that he was back in training. He was also omitted from the squad that travelled to northern France last week. But having made the journey stateside, Wenger will surely be desperate for the Spaniard to get games under his belt after missing so much football this year.

Jack Wilshere (Centre midfield)

While Gunners fans will be eager to see Xhaka in action for the first time, Jack Wilshere, like Cazorla, needs games like air.

Jeff Reine-Adelaide (Attacking midfielder)

The 18-year-old Frenchman, who provided a telling glimpse of his potential at last summer's Emirates Cup, took up a role playing just off the centre forward against Lens last Friday. Another cameo could be in the offing.

Alex Iwobi
Iwobi started from the left against Lens. Getty

Alex Iwobi (Left attacking midfielder)

Arsenal fought to keep the 19-year-old with them this summer despite Nigeria's attempts to call him up for their Olympic squad. With Sanchez and Ozil returning to training later than planned, Iwobi could have an important role to play at the start of the season.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Right attacking midfielder)

Oxlade-Chamberlain came off the bench at half-time against Lens and found the back of the net, sliding in off the right wing. Like Cazorla and Wilshere, he is another who needs to discover some match rhythm.

Theo Walcott (Centre-forward)

Fit and, more importantly, competent strikers are currently at a premium at Arsenal. Chuba Akpom was given the nod to start against Lens, perhaps now it's the turn of Theo Walcott.