Team News: Wenger Offers Update On Walcott, Ospina, Koscielny + More
Arsenal kick off the new Premier League season against Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday evening. Here is the latest team news from Arsene.
Arsenal kick off the new Premier League season against Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday evening.
Ahead of the game, boss Arsene Wenger has been speaking to Arsenal.com and gave the clubs official website a team news update including the latest on the fitness of Theo Walcott, Ryo Miyaichi, Serge Gnabry, David Ospina, Abou Diaby and Laurent Koscielny.
Walcott has been on the sidelines since early January after rupturing a cruciate ligament in his knee but he’s been working his way back to fitness and is on course to return to full training at the end of August or the start of September.
Wenger also confirmed that Miyaichi is close to returning to action but unfortunately there is no fixed timeframe over Gnabry’s return, while new goalkeeper Ospina is still two to three weeks away after injuring his thigh playing for Colombia against Brazil at the World Cup.
The boss did have some good news for us after confirming that Diaby is ‘looking good’ in full training this week, while he also eased fears over the fitness of Koscielny by declaring the defender fit to face Palace despite picking up a knock to his Achilles against Manchester City last weekend.
Here is what the boss told Arsenal.com:
on Theo Walcott and Ryo…
They are not available. Ryo is very close after injury and Theo is, as I always said, end of August or start of September. That is back into training of course.
on Serge Gnabry…
He is not ready as well. I am not sure about the timeframe at the moment.
on David Ospina…
Ospina is two or three weeks away. He has a thigh strain from the Brazil vs Colombia game.
on Abou Diaby…
He’s back in full training – that’s good news. He needs to play a few games but this week he looked good in training.
on Laurent Koscielny…
Koscielny had a knock on his Achilles but he should be available for Saturday.
Obviously it’s a huge relief that Koscielny is okay and should be fit to play on Saturday. We would have had a serious problem at center-back had the Frenchman been ruled out, but now he should take his place alongside Calum Chambers at the back.
Theo’s return can’t come soon enough as he was hugely missed during the second half of last season, and I can’t wait to see him in the same team along with Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez. Let’s hope everything goes smoothly when he returns to full training in a few weeks time.