As one key midfielder returns for the north Londoners, another faces a spell on the sidelines.
Premier League leaders Arsenal have been handed a massive fitness boost with the news that key midfield player Mathieu Flamini will be available to return to the Gunners’ starting lineup for their trip to take on struggling Crystal Palace in the top flight at Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon, according to reports in the Daily Mirror.
The experienced and influential former France international was absent for the north London club as they lost 2-1 to Borussia Dortmund at the Emirates in their Uefa Champions League clash on Tuesday night, with the holding midfield player’s presence being badly missed.
Flamini, 29, had been forced to leave the field of play during last Saturday’s 3-1 home win over Norwich City in the Premier League after suffering concussion, with the five-day rule surrounding such head injuries subsequently ruling the player out of the midweek clash with Dortmund.
However, Arsenal head coach Arsene Wenger has now confirmed that Flamini will be back to take his usual place in midfield for the trip across the capital to face relegation-threatened and manager-less Palace.
But the Frenchman also claimed that there were now doubts over the availability of England international Jack Wilshere after the playmaker suffered another ankle injury in the club’s Champions League reverse on Tuesday.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger said: “Flamini is available. He had no basic injury – it was just a precaution. Wilshere will be checked later by the medical people and we’ll see if I will involve him or not.
“Flamini has been important in the balance of our team. We are happy to have him back.