Ozil ill, Aubameyang benched as Arsenal target momentum ahead of Atletico

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been benched by Arsenal, as Arsene Wenger gives others the chance to find form before facing Atletico Madrid.

Arsenal players celebrating   -  Getty Images

Alexandre Lacazette will lead the line in place of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang against West Ham in the first game since Arsene Wenger announced he will leave Arsenal at the end of the season.

Wenger had hinted at leaving Aubameyang out during his pre-match news conference, because the Gabon international will be unavailable for Thursday's Europa League semi-final first leg with Atletico Madrid.

And he has indeed omitted the former Borussia Dortmund forward, giving Lacazette and Danny Welbeck - who are likely to start against Atletico on Thursday - the chance to build up some momentum ahead of that crucial encounter. They are joined by Alex Iwobi.

There is no Mesut Ozil, however, as the German misses out through illness, while Petr Cech (hip), Sead Kolasinac and Jack Wilshere (both ankle) are absent with minor injuries.

David Ospina starts between the posts, and Aaron Ramsey will likely be expected to shoulder some of the attacking responsibilities of Ozil.

West Ham are unchanged from their 1-1 draw at home to Stoke City last time out.


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