Arsene Wenger has told www.arsenal.com that defender Gabriel Paulista could be in contention for Arsenal’s Premier League trip to Manchester United on Sunday.
The Brazilian international has missed the Gunners’ last three matches with a hamstring strain, but will train with the first team on Friday, according to www.arsenal.com.
Wenger is quoted by www.arsenal.com as saying: “He is coming back into the squad tomorrow, so we will see how he responds to that, but the signs are positive. He might be available for Sunday.”
Gabriel’s return will be a boost to Arsenal on the day that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was ruled out for the rest of the season with knee and ankle injuries, reports the Daily Mail.
Oxlade-Chamberlain was substituted three minutes into the second half of Tuesday’s 2-0 defeat to Barcelona after failing to run off knocks sustained in a tackle with Javier Mascherano.
It is also confirmed on www.arsenal.com that Oxlade-Chamberlain’s fellow midfielders Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere are still sidelined, but at least Gabriel is back to bolster the defence.
Arsenal only have three recognised senior centre-backs – the others being Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny – and rotation will likely be required over a busy period of important fixtures.
The title-chasing Gunners have three Premier League games this week, including a huge visit to rivals Tottenham Hotspur, before an FA Cup replay with Hull City and the return leg against Barca.
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