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Arsenal Team News: Wenger Gives Injury Update Ahead Of Chelsea Clash
Two of this seasons title challengers go head-to-head on Monday night as Arsenal entertain Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners have slipped to third in the table following wins for Liverpool and Manchester City on Saturday, so the north Londoners will be looking to reclaim top spot with a win over Jose Mourinho’s men.
Arsene Wenger has given Arsenal.com a team news update ahead of the game, with the Frenchman giving the latest on Laurent Koscielny and Lukas Podolski’s fitness.
Unfortunately, it seems Koscielny will be unavailable for the clash. The centre-back was forced off against Manchester City last week with a nasty cut to his knee and Wenger claims he is ’80 or 90′ per cent likely to miss out.
Koscielny’s absence will see Thomas Vermaelen given another chance to impress with the Belgian set to start alongside Per Mertesacker in the Arsenal defence.
The good news for Gooners is that Podolski should be back in the squad for the first time since August after recovering from a hamstring tear. The German is unlikely to start but could be among the substitutes giving Wenger another option in attack.
The only other piece of team news is that Jack Wilshere will miss the game after being slapped with a two-game ban for swearing at Man City supporters last weekend. Here is what Wenger told the clubs official website:
on the team news…
The team news [compared to Man City] is that Koscielny is out for the game. It’s 80 or 90 per cent he is out. Jack Wilshere of course is suspended. Everybody else will be available.
on Lukas Podolski…
He is available to be selected.
on the boost of having Podolski back…
It’s a big boost because he can score goals in big games. He has shown that before. He is a clinical finisher and a great football player.
A win will see Arsenal move back to the top of the table and give them the perfect start to what’s going to be a hectic Christmas period.
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