Arsene Wenger has hinted he has found his perfect midfield combination, which could spell bad news for the likes of Aaron Ramsey and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Injuries suffered by the pair on international duty handed Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny an opportunity to rekindle a central midfield partnership which they initially formed during their time together at FC Basel.
Arsenal subsequently coasted to a 3-0 win over West Ham, their most convincing performance in months, with Elneny, afforded his first Premier League start since New Year’s Day, and Xhaka key to the victory.
Afterwards, Wenger singled out the Egypt international for praise, claiming he offered the continuity and fluency that had been lacking from Arsenal’s play in recent weeks.
Ahead of Monday’s London derby against Crystal Palace, Wenger again hinted he was prepared to stick with the winning formula, which would likely see Ramsey and Oxlade-Chamberlain consigned to the bench again.
He said: I liked [against West Ham] the fact that the speed of our passing in the heart of the game was very good.
‘I believe that is not only the qualityof our passing that is important, but the speed of our passing that is needed. We want to play quickly.
‘We have quick strikers and we need to feed them quickly, so the speed of decision making becomes very important.’