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Arsenal Team News: Arsene Wenger Reveals Triple Fitness Boost

Arsene Wenger has revealed that Danny Welbeck, Mathieu Debuchy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have all returned to full training today. See what the boss said


Arsene Wenger has revealed that Danny Welbeck, Mathieu Debuchy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have all returned to full training today.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday’s clash with West Brom, the boss confirmed that Welbeck will train today for the first time since suffering a knee injury in training earlier this month.

The 24-year-old has been forced to miss our last four games and although he’s also set to sit out Sunday’s clash with West Brom, the boss feels he could recover quickly to take part in next weeks FA Cup final.

Oxlade-Chamberlain is another who’s due to resume full training today after recovering from hamstring and groin injuries which have kept him on the sidelines for over two months.

The midfielder isn’t expected to play any part this weekend but Wenger says it’s possible he could be back in contention to face Aston Villa at Wembley.

Like Oxlade-Chamberlain, Debuchy has also returned to training today after missing our last four games with a hamstring problem. The Frenchman is also set to be short for the West Brom game but could play some part in the Cup final.

Wenger confirmed that we’ve suffered no fresh injuries from Wednesday’s 0-0 draw with Sunderland but he may rest a couple of players this weekend as some of the boys looked a little jaded.

The boss told

on team news

We have no basic injuries from our last game. We had a few jaded legs maybe at the end of the game but we’ll see how everybody recovers for Sunday. Do we have anybody back for Sunday? Danny Welbeck no, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is back in full training today [Friday], and Mathieu Debuchy as well. They might be a bit short.

on Welbeck…

There is a good chance that he will be available for England. It’s difficult to know. He had a little knee problem and will go out today for the first time. We have to wait for the response to that to know if he responds in a positive way. He could be fit very quickly.

on whether he will have to play in FA Cup final to play for England…

Certainly yes because if he is not available for the FA Cup final, I can’t see him being competitive enough for England.

on Oxlade-Chamberlain playing in the final…

It’s not impossible because he starts full training today. We’ll see how he responds to that.

on Welbeck being in England squad but not Oxlade-Chamberlain…

The difference is that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has not played in any competition for a long time. That lack of competition takes some time to come back to a good competitive level. Danny Welbeck has not been out for a long time and he has nothing at all on any scan, just bone bruising on his knee. That’s just the pain that will decide if he is fit or not.

on if he’s changed training to help jaded players…

Yes, we have our medical tests to see how everyone recovers. We have given a lot physically and mentally at Manchester United and it [the time before the Sunderland game] was a bit short maybe for us to recover completely. This time we have a bit longer to recover and we have our tests to see how well everybody recovers. I might rest one or two maybe but overall I believe that the team will be similar to the team that played on Wednesday night.

It will be a major boost if Welbeck and Oxlade-Chamberlain can get themselves fit enough to be in the squad for the FA Cup final as I think we’ve sorely missed both players in recent weeks.

Olivier Giroud looks tired and we could certainly do with some fresh legs in attack as we seem to be running out of steam heading into the Villa game. Even if they are only substitutes, it will be important to have players available to call upon from the bench if needed, so let’s hope they can both prove their fitness over the coming days.

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