Arsenal travel to Villa Park to play Aston Villa on Saturday evening and manager Arsene Wenger has give an injury update ahead of the game.
The boss gave the latest on Andre Santos, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott, Abou Diaby and Tomas Rosicky at his weekly press conference on Thursday afternoon.
Left back Santos has been ruled out for a further 10 days after missing the last two games with a stomach injury. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain looks ‘alright’ after being forced off in last nights 2-0 win over Montpellier, Theo Walcott remains out with a shoulder injury but could be back in contention for the trip to Everton next Wednesday.
Injury-prone midfielder Abou Diaby is another 3-4 weeks away from fitness but there is better news on Tomas Rosicky who will be back in full training on Monday after four months in the sidelines. Here is what Arsene told Arsenal.com.
on the latest team news…
Santos is out for 10 days with an abdominal strain. Oxlade-Chamberlain looks alright. Theo [Walcott] is out for Saturday, but has a chance for Wednesday at Everton.
on Abou Diaby…
If all goes well, three to four weeks.
on Tomas Rosicky…
He should be back with us on Monday. He started in team training on Monday. Last year from January to the end of the season he was one of the most influential players in our squad. I hope he can repeat that because until now we haven’t seen him and he was injured at the European Championship. He has a similar injury to Scott Parker, they had operations at the same time and they will come back basically at the same time. It is very difficult [mentally] for him, because Tomas is a guy who loves to play, who is happy on a football pitch. When you have been injured as many times as he has been, it is not easy to take.
So the injured players are slowly getting back to fitness. Walcott and Santos are short-term and it’s great to have Rosicky back. He will be a real asset to bring off the bench or start if we want to give Cazorla or Wilshere a rest.
The major worry is Diaby. Another innocuous injury has turned into a serious one that looks like it will keep him out for far longer than first thought. He really can’t be relied upon and it’s about time Wenger admitted it and signed a midfield monster who will play more than 10 games a season (if their lucky!).