Arsenal Team News: Wenger Offers Update On Walcott, Debuchy, Koscielny + More
Arsene Wenger has given an update on the fitness of Walcott, Debuchy, Koscielny, Szczesny, Gibbs, Monreal and Rosicky ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Stoke.
Arsenal will be looking to make it three league wins in a row when we travel to the Britannia Stadium to take on Stoke City on Saturday afternoon.
Ahead of the game, Arsene Wenger has been speaking to the media at his pre-match press conference this morning and gave Arsenal.com a full team news update with the latest on a number of our injured stars.
The boss confirmed that Theo Walcott is still struggling with a groin problem that he picked up while away with the England squad last month and while the attacker will have an injection to aid the inflammation, he’s still expected to sit out our next two games at least.
Mathieu Debuchy is back in full training after over three months out with an ankle injury and although tomorrow’s game will come too soon, the boss may decide to include him in the squad to face Galatasaray in the Champions League on Tuesday.
Wojceich Szczesny is also training again having missed the last three games with a hip injury he sustained against Manchester United but he’ll face a late test to see if he’s able to travel with the squad for tomorrow’s game.
Wenger will make a late decision on whether to start Laurent Koscielny in his third match in a week as the boss continues to be cautious with the Frenchman due to his troublesome Achilles problem. If Kos does play tomorrow then I expect he may be rested against Galatasaray next week.
Nacho Monreal is definitely ruled out of the Stoke game while Tomas Rosicky and Yaya Sanogo are also doubts with thigh and calf injuries, but Wenger hopes to have Kieran Gibbs back after he missed the last two games with a hip injury.
The boss told the clubs website:
on team news…
We have to assess a few players today because we had some bad surprises with Nacho Monreal being out for tomorrow’s game. Hopefully Kieran Gibbs will be available and back in the team. We have to assess some other players like Laurent Koscielny and a few bumps and bruises that we got after the game. I’ll make that decision after today. We might also lose Tomas Rosicky for a thigh problem and Yaya Sanogo for a calf problem.
on Laurent Koscielny…
I would like him to play a third [game after coming back from injury] because he is a very important player in our squad, and ideally he will be available tomorrow. That decision will only be made tomorrow morning.
on Wojciech Szczesny and Mathieu Debuchy…
Szczesny will be back today in full training. I don’t know if he will be completely available or not yet. Debuchy is also back in training but it’s too early for him. The earliest he could be available is maybe on Tuesday. I don’t know whether I will take him yet because we are short number wise.
on Walcott’s availability…
Walcott is still struggling with his groin inflammation. I think he has an injection today to take care of that. Hopefully he can be available again after that. Galatasaray will be too early for him.
So it looks like we’ll be heading to the Britannia with a patched-up squad with the big question marks over who will line-up in defence. Gibbs was a sub against Southampton on Wednesday night so I’d be surprised if he wasn’t passed fit to start at left-back and I think we’ll take a risk on Koscielny tomorrow before resting him in midweek.
Hopefully we can come through the Stoke game without any new injuries as we should have the likes of Walcott and Debuchy available for the Newcastle game next weekend, which will be a huge boost for the club.
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