Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has provided fitness updates on various key individuals in his squad and on the whole it doesn’t look particularly positive.
The Gunners travel to the London Stadium this weekend to take on West Ham United, and Wenger has revealed that he’ll be without some key players again.
Aside from confirming that Santi Cazorla required surgery on his ankle and so the Spaniard will be out for at least three months, as per the club’s official website, Wenger also provided updates on Mathieu Debuchy, Mohamed Elneny and Olivier Giroud.
The French tactician revealed that Debuchy will be sidelined for six weeks after sustaining a serious hamstring injury just 14 minutes into his comeback game against Bournemouth last weekend.
That will be a major concern for Wenger as with Hector Bellerin already out with an injury of his own, he’ll be forced to play underperforming Carl Jenkinson or Gabriel out of his natural position at right back.
Elsewhere, Elneny faces a late fitness test on Friday to determine whether or not he can be involved against the Hammers, and it’s a similar scenario for Giroud with Wenger conceding that he thought he would be ready but he may well have to wait until the Champions League tie with Basel next week.
There was some positive news on the injury front though, and that came courtesy of Danny Welbeck who has returned to training after another long-term absence.
However, Wenger added that the England international is still around four weeks away from playing and so he’ll have to make do without him for a while longer.
Arsenal battled through November relatively unscathed aside from their EFL Cup exit, but with performances not deemed good enough by many supporters, Wenger will know that they’ll be under pressure to produce against Slaven Bilic’s side regardless of who’s missing.