Some potentially worrying news regarding the fitness of captain Thomas Vermaelen today Gooners with the Daily Mail reporting that the defender has taken anti-inflammatory injections in a bid to be fit to face Bayern Munich next Tuesday.
Vermaelen picked up an ankle knock against Liverpool at the end of January and was initially expected to be out for a matter of days. But the problem seems to be worse than first thought and he’s already missed the last two games against Stoke and Sunderland, is almost certain to miss Saturday’s FA Cup clash with Blackburn and is now facing a race against time to be fit to face Bayern Munich next Tuesday.
The Mail claim he’s taken an anti-inflammatory injection in the hope that he can avoid having to undergo ankle surgery. If all goes well, he should return to light training this week and make a push to be fit to face the Germans next week, but if the injection doesn’t cure the problem he faces surgery and the prospect of being out for weeks.
If Vermaelen is ruled out of the game, we’re going to have a real problem at left back. Kieran Gibbs is out for 4-6 weeks, new signing Nacho Monreal is cup-tied after already playing in the Champions League with Malaga and Andre Santos is on the verge of joining Gremio. So we’ll be left with no cover at left-back.
Vermaelen was pencilled in to fill the void but even if he’s fit, Laurent Koscielny is also nursing an injury and is a doubt for next week, so the Belgian may be required in the middle due to our lack of defensive cover.
While the injuries are unfortunate, it really does call in to question Arsene Wenger’s decision not to bring in more cover at the back during the January window. A versatile defender was a must for me. Monreal has obviously been signed to replace Santos, but where was the cover for centre-back Arsene?
Anyway, let’s keep everything crossed that both Koscielny and Vermaelen are fit to face Bayern or we could be out or touch after just the first leg.
What will Arsene do if Vermaelen isn’t fit? Leave your suggestions below…