Rob Holding to fill in David Luiz position on Thursday

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Rob Holding has not been given any guarantees that he will replace one of David Luiz or Sokratis Papastathopoulos in the Arsenal pecking order, according to the Mail Online .

The Englishman has returned to full fitness after 10 months out with the knee injury he picked up in Arsenal’s 2-2 draw with Manchester United in December.

He’s now eyeing a return to the team in Thursday’s Europa League group stage opener against Eintracht Frankfurt in Germany.

Plenty of Arsenal fans are hoping to see him following the Gunners’ defensive horror show in Sunday’s 2-2 Premier League draw with Watford at Vicarage Road.

Errors from Sokratis and Luiz contributed to the Gunners throwing away a two-goal lead to draw the game, and led to fierce criticism of the defence from forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after the match.

“We knew that they (Watford) were going to try and come back with good intentions, of the kind they demonstrated in the second half,” said Aubameyang, who scored Arsenal’s two goals.

“Sadly, we were not able to deal with them well. I feel like we are literally giving goals to the opposition, it is up to us to progress in that respect.”

Holding has been figuring in a number of Gunners’ under-23 games this season, and he now feels ready to push for a first-team berth.

Having initially broken through under Arsene Wenger, the former Bolton Wanderers centre-back rose to prominence under Emery last season, featuring 26 times in all competitions in the first half of the season before his injury struck.

After the trip to Germany on Thursday, the Gunners entertain Aston Villa at home in the Premier League on Sunday as they search for what would be a first domestic victory in four games.


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