Arsenal Team News: Wenger Offers Update On Ramsey, Gabriel, Ozil & More

By on August 26, 2016

Arsenal will be looking to secure their first win of the new Premier League season when we travel to Vicarage Road to take on Watford on Saturday afternoon.

Ahead of the game, Arsene Wenger has been speaking to the media at his pre-match press conference today and he’s given reporters a team news and injury update including the latest on the fitness of several of his first team players.

Aaron Ramsey and Alex Iwobi missed the 0-0 draw at Leicester after suffering injuries during our season opener against Liverpool and the pair were nitially ruled out for up to a month.

Wenger has now provided an update and says the duo are ‘progressing well’ but it’s too early to say whether they will be back in contention after the upcoming international break.

Gabriel has been on the sidelines nursing an ankle injury that he picked up in pre-season training at the start of the month but the boss says the defender is ahead of schedule in his recovery.

The Brazilian international was initially ruled out for up to eight weeks but Arsene has said Gabriel could return in six, meaning he should be available again in mid-September.

There was also an update on Carl Jenkinson with Wenger revealing that the full-back has undergone two shoulder operations while he continues to recover from a serious knee injury, but the defender could be back in action in just six weeks time.

Thankfully we have no fresh injury concerns to worry about so we’ll have a similar squad to the one that went to Leicester last weekend.

The boss told Arsenal.com:

on the latest team news…
Basically we have the same squad available as last week. I think it will be a similar squad.

on Ramsey and Iwobi…
They are progressing well. Will it be immediately after the break [that they are back]? That’s what we’ll have to see in the next two weeks.

on Gabriel…
He’s progressing very well. He’s ahead of schedule. We said six to eight weeks and we think it could be six.

on Jenkinson…
Carl Jenkinson, we plan six weeks from today. He had to do his shoulders as well – sometimes when a guy has weaknesses and he has a big injury, you take advantage of the fact that he has a big injury to sort out the short ones. That’s what we did with him. He had the two shoulders done [too]. He went through a tough time, Carl. But he’s brave, conscientious, motivated and I think he will come back well.

Wenger has also given reporters an update on the fitness of Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud. Both players have eased their way back in to action this season after only returning to pre-season training on August 8th having been given an extended break following their participation at Euro 2016 this summer.

After just two weeks training, Ozil was named on the bench for last weekend’s 0-0 draw at Leicester City but continued to build on his match fitness after making a second half substitute appearance.

arsenal's mesut ozil

Wenger has confirmed that after getting another full weeks training under his belt, Ozil could be back in contention to start at Watford but the boss will make a final decision over the next 24 hours.

However, Giroud is still behind in his fitness so the French international is less likely to start at Vicarage Road tomorrow afternoon. The boss is quoted as saying by the Evening Standard:

“He’s [Ozil] not far now. That’s a decision I have to make in the next 24 hours.

“It will be a similar squad. Not everybody is up to speed completely.

“We still have some players who are a little bit behind,”

“Giroud is still a little bit fractional behind physically,”

It will be a big boost to have Ozil back as his creativity has been sorely missed over the past two games, particularly at the King Power last time out. With Giroud unlikely to start again, Alexis Sanchez looks set to continue his role through the middle with Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain on the wings.

Arsenal are the 5/7 favourites to win the game but if you want even better odds, then my recommended bet would be Arsenal to win 2-0 at odds of 27/4. 138.com are offering a 100% free bet up to £25 so if you took full advantage of that offer, then you would stand to win £193.75 if Arsenal beat Watford 2-0 on Saturday!

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