Arsene Wenger has not brought his strongest team to Istanbul, and understandably so, given how slim the chances are of Arsenal overtaking Borussia Dortmund and winning Group D.
This means there will be a sturdy-looking defence, anchored again by Per Mertesacker, and a rather less reliable front-line, with Joel Campbell, Yaya Sanogo and Lukas Podolski (Six starts between them this season, 17 from the bench, two goals).
What is more interesting in the long-term is Wenger's inclusion of six teenagers on his subsitute's bench. Despite Arsenal's reputation for youth development, the stream of young players into the first team has been dry for a while. This evening, though, there may be Champions League debuts for a few of the next generation.
Arsenal's injury list
Arsenal's injury list
1/5 Mikel Arteta (midfield)
Like Diaby, the Spaniard is closing in on a return but the Swansea match will come to soon. The club captain last played in November.
2/5 Mathieu Debuchy (defender)
Returned in the FA Cup semi-final win over Reading but has since been ruled out with injury and Wenger confirmed he remains 'unavailable'.
3/5 Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (midfield)
Suffered a hamstring injury against Manchester United in the FA Cup and hasn't played since as it has exacerbated a groin problem. Out at least until May and facing surgery in the summer.
4/5 Aaron Ramsey (midfield)
Aaron Ramsey caught a kick on his calf during the win over Hull and was later substituted. The Welshman was rated 50/50 for the Swansea match by Wenger, but it now appears that he is a major doubt for the clash at the Emirates.
5/5 Danny Welbeck (forward)
Danny Welbeck has not played since the goalless draw with Chelsea towards the end of April after suffering a knee injury. Wenger has confirmed that the injury is 'nothing major', and that he should return to full fitness before the end of the season.
The most senior among them is Chuba Akpom, the athletic 19-year-old striker whom Wenger described at his pre-match press conference yesterday as being 'close to the first team'. Akpom, who has been impressing for Arsenal's academy teams for some time, scored a hat-trick for the Under-21s last week.
After loan spells at Brentford and Coventry City last year there were hopes for another move this summer, and FC Twente and Feyenoord were both keen on him, only for injuries to Olivier Giroud and Yaya Sanogo restricting Wenger's ability to let him go. This January could be different.
Gedion Zelalem is just 17 but has been spoken of for some time as the most gifted Arsenal youngster of his generation. The nimble little midfielder made his debut in January, playing 19 minutes of an FA Cup game against Coventry City, and while he still has a lot of growing to do the skill and vision are already clearly inherent.
As long as Arsenal are not losing badly tonight there is no reason why Wenger should not throw them on in the second half. It could well be their first taste of many.
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