Arsenal team news: 27-year-old returns but 4 players to miss Rapid Vienna clash
Arsenal have provided a team news and injury update ahead of their Europa League group stage clash with Rapid Vienna at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday night.
The club have confirmed a boost with the news that Sead Kolasinac is back in contention after completing his self isolating period. The 27-year-old tested positive for Covid during the international break last month but has now been given the green light to return after testing negative this week.
Nicolas Pepe is also available for selection against Vienna in the Europa League tomorrow night as his suspension only covers domestic games. The Ivorian is expected to start as he’ll be banned for the North London derby on Sunday.
Arsenal have also provided an update on Thomas Partey and it looks like the midfielder is still no closer to returning to action as he continues to recover from a thigh injury that he sustained last month. Partey isn’t even scheduled to resume training any time soon so I don’t think we’ll be seeing him back playing for a number of weeks.
Pablo Mari has stepped-up his recovery from a serious knee injury with a run out for the U23s recently but the Rapid Vienna game will come too soon for him while Gabriel Martinelli is also out – although the attacker is aiming to play for the U23s before the end of the month.
A team news update on Arsenal.com confirmed:
Tested positive for Covid-19 while on international duty with Bosnia and Herzegovina. Sead is currently asymptomatic and, following negative tests, has been cleared to be available for Thursday’s match.
Left thigh. Sustained strain to left thigh during Aston Villa (h) on November 8. Thomas is progressing with his rehabilitation ahead of returning to full training.
Available for selection. Currently serving a three-match Premier League suspension – unavailable for Tottenham Hotspur (a) and Burnley (h). Available for Europa League matches.
Left ankle. Sustained significant sprain to ankle ligaments during Manchester City (a) on June 17. Pablo successfully completed 45 minutes for the under-23s on Friday night in the PL2 against Derby County. Continues to participate into full training sessions as he approaches full match fitness.
Left knee. Sustained injury during training on June 21. Gabi is now integrating into squad sessions. Aiming to participate in an under-23s match before the end of December.
Arsenal also confirmed yesterday that David Luiz won’t be available tomorrow after suffering a nasty cut to his head against Wolves at the weekend so Mikel Arteta will be without at least four players.
The Gunners boss is expected to rest a number of his key first team players once again so we should see the likes of Bernd Leno, Gabriel, Kieran Tierney, Hector Bellerin, Bukayo Saka and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang given a breather.
Arsenal have already wrapped-up qualification to the knockout stages of the Europa League so Arteta will use tomorrow’s game to give some of his fringe players a run-out in the first team.
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