Unai Emery has appeared to deal a blow to Alexandre Lacazette by confirming he won’t switch to two up front against West Ham.
Emery admits he is already under pressure as he goes in search of his first point as Arsenal boss against the Hammers on Saturday.
But the Spaniard will not be changing his 4-2-3-1 formation – meaning striker Lacazette is likely to miss out unless he or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are shifted out to the left.
Lacazette, who cost £52million and earns £150,000 a week, has started the defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea on the bench.
When asked if he was considering playing two strikers, Emery replied: “At the moment, no. At the moment, I think we need to have the control with the possession, with the positioning on the pitch, with more players inside.
“And after this possession, to do the attacking moments and defending moments with this balance.
“But, it is one possibility to continue in our progress and in one moment to try also to play with two scorers.
“In the last match of the pre-season, against Lazio, I did it with Lacazette and (Eddie) Nketiah. But also, this position also for the players, they know that in one moment we can do that. But at the moment, no.
“We are working on different situations tactically. In the first we are playing with four at the back, then we have two and one, and one and two. With two and one, it is like a 4-2-3-1 and one, two, is for a 4-1-4-1 or a 4-3-3.
“After the first two matches, we have two defeats and we need to win this match against West Ham.
“We are thinking in our way and about our work to create our ideas and our system on Saturday with our supporters at the Emirates.
“It’s very important to show them a better performance than in the two first matches.”
Emery has also backed Aubameyang to rediscover his scoring touch after drawing a blank in the defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea.
The Gabon hitman and Henrikh Mkhitaryan both missed sitters in the 3-2 loss at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Emery added: “The first idea for us on Saturday is to create these chances and then the players’ confidence for starting to arrive in the box, to score.
“Maybe the players can not score three good chances in one match and on another day, I am sure they are going to do maybe the same chances in one match and score three.
“For that, Aubameyang is a player who, in his career, has scored a lot and he is going to do that here also.”
Jack Wilshere will return in West Ham’s midfield after leaving the Gunners on a free in the summer.
Wilshere was told by Emery that his game time would be heavily reduced if he signed a new contract on less money.
Speaking at Arsenal’s training ground ahead of the game, Emery said: “I spoke with him for 15 minutes here in Colney before he left.
“The first thing for me is I have respect for his career here. And then, he chooses what the best was for him in his future.
“It’s for that, on Saturday, I know that here, the supporters like him and have this respect also.
“I think there is a good reception for him here. Then we are going to play and we are going to think after that, for us to win. But, I (hope) the best for his career.”