Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill is without the services of Connor Wickham who has been shipped off to Sheffield Wednesday while James McClean is also missing after picking up a knock whilst away on international duty this midweek with Ireland.
O'Neill does have the option of bringing back Lee Cattermole however, and he has chosen to do that. We can only hope that Cattermole is fully fit after previous attempts to rush him back from injury too early have ended disastrously. Cattermole comes in at the expense of Seb Larsson.
After coming through 45 minutes at Reading last week, Danny Rose also starts for Sunderland in place of David Vaughan, with Jack Colback moving into midfield.
O'Neill has resisted temptation to start with Danny Graham who has to settle for a spot on the bench, alongside fellow injury returnee Carlos Cuellar
Sunderland (4-4-1-1): Simon Mignolet; Craig Gardner, Titus Bramble, John O'Shea, Danny Rose; Jack Colback, Lee Cattermole, Alfred N'Diaye, Stephane Sessegnon, Adam Johnson, Steven Fletcher.
Substitutes: Keiren Westwood, Carlos Cuellar, Phil Bardsley, Kader Mangane, Seb Larsson, David Vaughan, Danny Graham
Meanwhile Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has had some injury concerns in defence but Per Mertesacker is fit to start for the visitors and takes his place there alongside Laurent Koscielny. Thomas Vermaelen sits this one out.
The rest of the Arsenal team is very much as expected with perhaps the only 'shock' omission that of Lukas Podolski who is dropped to the bench at the expense of Aaron Ramsey.
Arsenal (4-2-3-1): Wojciech Szczesny; Bacary Sagna, Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal; Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere; Santi Cazorla, Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott; Olivier Giroud
Substitutes: Vito Mannone, Abou Diaby, Thomas Rosicky, Lukas Podolski, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carl Jenkinson, Ignasi Miquel.