Arsenal boss Unai Emery reportedly has two key decisions to make before his side’s Premier League opener against Newcastle Utd on Sunday.
The Gunners have had a positive summer transfer window in strengthening their squad, with the likes of Nicolas Pepe, David Luiz, Kieran Tierney and Dani Ceballos arriving at the Emirates.
They’ll hope to make a fast start to the new campaign when they face Newcastle Utd, as Emery will be desperate to ensure that they break back into the top four this season.
However, he could be without two key individuals for the trip to Tyneside, as freelance injury analyst Ben Dinnery notes in his tweet below that the Spanish tactician will have to wait on the fitness of both Alexandre Lacazette and Pepe.
The former is recovering from an ankle knock that he suffered in pre-season, while their summer signing was involved at the AFCON earlier this summer and so perhaps hasn’t got back up to speed as of yet having been given an extended break.
Arsenal will undoubtedly hope to be at full strength for the opening game of the season, but Emery will certainly not want to take any risks at this stage and see either Lacazette or Pepe pick up a fresh setback this weekend which will sideline them for longer.
In turn, it remains to be seen if they are passed fit before Sunday, and importantly, whether or not Emery starts them or perhaps uses them off the bench if necessary against Steve Bruce’s side.
With the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Mesut Ozil and others available, the Arsenal boss does have depth at his disposal.
Unai Emery will make a late decision on Alexandre Lacazette (right ankle). He will be assessed ahead of Sunday’s match at Newcastle. Nicolas Pepe (match fitness) is another doubt following his late return due to the Africa Cup of Nations. #AFC
— Ben Dinnery (@BenDinnery) August 9, 2019