Arsenal Team News: Wenger Offers Update On Gibbs, Koscielny + Vermaelen
Arsenal have arrived in Germany to prepare for Tuesday nights Champions League second leg against reigning champions Bayern Munich. Here’s the latest team news
Arsenal have arrived in Germany to prepare for Tuesday nights Champions League second leg against reigning champions Bayern Munich.
Ahead of the game, boss Arsene Wenger has been speaking at his pre-match press conference this evening and gave Arsenal.com a team news and injury update.
The big news is that Kieran Gibbs has been ruled out of the match after picking up an ankle injury during Saturday’s 4-1 FA Cup win over Everton. The 24-year-old limped off in the final stages of the game and the boss has confirmed he wont feature at the Allianz Arena but could return in time to take on Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
The good news is that Laurent Koscielny is back in the squad and available again. The centre-back missed Saturday’s victory after feeling a tight hamstring while away with the France squad last week, but he’s made the trip to Germany and is set to return alongside Per Mertesacker tomorrow.
That means that Thomas Vermaelen will be free to move over to left-back to deputise for Gibbs, and with Nacho Monreal still out with a foot injury, Wenger confirmed the Belgian defender could fill the void.
Here’s what the boss told the clubs official website:
on the team news…
We have lost Kieran Gibbs from the squad on Saturday with an ankle problem. Laurent Koscielny is back in the squad, so the only change in the squad is Koscielny for Gibbs.
on Vermaelen playing at left back…
That is a possibility.
on the north London derby…
Gibbs has a chance for Sunday.
Arsenal go into the game knowing they need to score at least two goals in order to turn around the 2-0 first leg defeat, but we’ll take heart from knowing we’ve already beaten Bayern 2-0 on their own ground this time last year, so will be hoping for a repeat performance tomorrow.
It’s a big blow to lose Gibbs and Wenger must now figure out the best solution. Obviously Vermaelen can switch to left-back but another option would be to move Bacary Sagna across and bring Carl Jenkinson in at right-back. I’d prefer we go with Vermaelen but we’ll have to see what the boss decides on Tuesday night.
What option would you go with at left back? Leave your suggestions below.
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