Arsenal have entered 2011 in stellar fashion despite some embarrassing slip ups. The North London giants sit third in the English Premier League table with 40 points, only four points of leaders Manchester United. The Gunners are still in the title race alongside reaching the Carling Cup semi final where they encounter Championship side Ipswich Town in the coming days.
Arsene Wenger's men have also advanced to the last 16 of Europes most prestigious club competition, the UEFA Champions League, as well as still fighting alive in the FA Cup. To cap it all off, for the first time in numerous seasons, Arsenal have enjoyed a relatively fit roster for the first half of 2010/2011. Albeit injuries have still occurred at the Emirates but not as severe or as much then in recent years.
So as Arsenal's quest to break their notorious five year title drought becomes more and more realistic, the Gunners must maintain consistency and momentum. With a virtually fully fit roster, Wenger must establish his strongest starting XI to ensure the Gunners can finally boast and brag the sweet success of silverware.
In Arsenal most recent encounters with top four teams, the Gunners have faced Chelsea and Manchester City. Both games have been defying moments in the EPL season. Wenger's men were far to superior for Carlo Ancelotti's Chelsea, the reigning Champions could not compete with the flowing 4-2-3-1 formation and potent attack of Arsenal.
Against Big Spenders City, the Gunners completely outplayed the Eastlands club but failed to capitalize on numerous chances and could only muster a depleting 0-0 draw. Both line ups looked to be Arsenal strongest bar the absence of defesive leader Thomas Vermaelen, who has not featured in the first team since August due to a persistent Achilles injury. However the Belgium has returned to training and should feature by months end.
So what is Arsenal's strongest XI?