Arsenal Team News: Wenger Reveals Sanchez Groin Problem + Wilshere Update

By on December 9, 2014

Alexis_Sanchez_Arsenal

Arsenal are in Turkey preparing for tonight’s final Champions League group game against Galatasaray.

Ahead of the game, Arsene Wenger has been speaking to Arsenal.com and gave the clubs website a team news and injury update.

The boss took the unusual decision to name his team last night and the big news is that Mathieu Debuchy makes his first start in over three months after recovering from an ankle injury. The Frenchman’s return will see Hector Bellerin move to left-back with Calum Chambers continuing alongside Per Mertesacker in the middle of defence.

Wojceich Szczesny returns in goal following a five-game absence due to a hip injury while the rest of the team is made up of Aaron Ramsey, Mathieu Flamini, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lukas Podolski, Joel Campbell and Yaya Sanogo – who comes back into the side having recovered from a minor calf problem.

The bench will be filled by youngsters with Akpom, Zelalem, Kamara, O’Connor, Iwobi and Maitland-Niles all hoping to get some minutes, which means some of the first team squad have been left back in North London with Santi Cazorla, Laurent Koscielny and Kieran Gibbs among those given a breather while Olivier Giroud isn’t eligible for the group stages of the Champions League.

Arsene has confirmed that Danny Welbeck could have travelled but they’ve taken the opportunity to rest a ‘little knee problem’ he’s had recently, while the boss also revealed that Alexis Sanchez has been carrying a groin injury for some time so he wanted to give the Chilean some time out to recover.

Wenger was also quizzed about the recovery of Jack Wilshere after newspaper reports yesterday claimed he had suffered a set-back, but the boss reiterated that the 22-year-old is on course to return from his ankle injury in three months.

Here is what Arsene told the clubs website:

on the team news…

To make it as simple as possible, I have 11 experienced players and six young players on the bench. That means I have nothing to hide. Debuchy is back with us and will play, Szczesny is back in goal, Mertesacker, Chambers will play because Gibbs did not travel, Bellerin at left-back. Then you have Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Flamini, Podolski, Sanogo and Campbell. The players who needed it stayed behind – like Cazorla, Sanchez, Gibbs, Giroud is not qualified and Welbeck, who could have travelled but recently had a little knee problem, so took advantage of that to rest him.

on any other news…

Not because of the game on Saturday, but Sanchez had a groin problem for some time, and he has played 27 games. Cazorla has played many games, it is more just the number of repetitive games we have.

on Jack Wilshere…

How long will Wilshere be out? Three months, and he had no setback. He is just in a boot, he cannot have a setback because he does not practise.

It’s certainly a brave decision from Wenger to rest some key players but I think he’s made the right call as we have two huge Premier League games coming up against Newcastle and Liverpool, and even a win over Galatasaray is unlikely to be enough to see us qualify top of the group.

The team he’s selected is still a decent eleven when you consider the amount of players missing, as we’ve also got a number of players unavailable through injury, so hopefully we can get a result in Turkey and hope Anderlecht can do us a favour in the other game.

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