Arsène Wenger Gives Injury Update Ahead of Chelsea
Last season’s FA Cup winners Arsenal start their 2017-18 campaign on Sunday when they take on Premier League champions Chelsea in the FA Community Shield at Wembley.
Firstly, Wenger was pleased to confirm that he’ll have a strong squad available to him when Arsenal face their London rivals this weekend, but doubts remain over Mesut Özil and Aaron Ramsey whom both missed training today.
The German playmaker has a minor ankle issue whilst Ramsey has been carrying a muscle injury of late. Arsène Wenger did say that neither is believed to be serious and that the pair are set to return to training on Saturday. This means they could be in contention to face the Blues.
Alexis Sánchez returned to pre-season training on Tuesday after recovering from a bout of flu, whilst Shkodran Mustafi was back in action last weekend. The pair had been given an extended leave following their participation in the FIFA Confederations Cup earlier this summer.
However, neither are expected to be in the squad to face Chelsea with such little time to prepare. They could both be saved for Arsenal’s opening Premier League match versus Leicester City on Friday 11 August.
Further negative news from Wenger was that Francis Coquelin has been ruled out of the trip to Wembley after suffering a knock in the Emirates Cup last weekend.
Although the injury isn’t thought to be too serious the French midfielder is expected to be out for around two weeks, meaning he will also miss the league opener.
Gabriel Paulista is also sidelined for the foreseeable future with the knee injury he picked up on the final day of last season. The Brazilian centre-back is running again.
Arsène Wenger told the club’s official website:
On the team news:
“We have basically everyone available to choose from on Sunday and today in training we didn’t have Özil, but he should be alright, and Ramsey, who should be alright as well. Some players are just coming back like Alexis and Mustafi, and I haven’t decided yet if I will involve them or not.”
On Özil and Ramsey:
“Ramsey had a little muscular problem, and Özil a a little ankle problem. They will train on Saturday.”On Francis Coquelin:
“No, he is not available. He got injured in the Emirates Cup but we don’t think it will be too bad – two weeks.”
“He is a long-term injury but he starts to run again now.”
“He is good, as you can see from training. He had a good rest, so he needs to work on his fitness but once he is in a game he is sharp. He doesn’t look like he has been away.”
On if he is over the flu:
“He is over the flu, yes. I told you it was never a problem for us.”
Record signing Alexandre Lacazette is expected to make his Arsenal debut on Sunday after joining from Lyon earlier this summer. Fellow new arrival Sead Kolašinac could also make his debut for the club in defence.