Arsenal FC manager Arsene Wenger has given updates on the perennial injury crisis at the Emirates ahead of the clash against Stoke City.
The Gunner have failed to score in their first two games at the Emirates and would be looking to score their first league goal at home for the season.
Vice captain Per Mertesacker who missed the clash against Liverpool FC due to illness is expected to return for the clash against the Potters. However, Arsene Wenger did not provide any concrete news on the fitness of the 30-year-old.
Mertesacker is back in training and Koscielny has been training normally
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, as quoted by the club’s official website, Arsene Wenger said:
“Per was out for 18 days but he’s back now in training.”
Laurent Koscielny, who was also absent for the clash against the Reds is back in training, He trained normally and is expected to start alongside Gabriel against Stoke City.
“Laurent is alright, he had a normal training session yesterday.”
Welbeck out till Christmas, Wilshere progressing slowly
Wenger also revealed that Welbeck was close to completing his rehabilitation from a knee injury he suffered last season. But, the forward could not complete the final stage and was advised to undergo surgery to rectify the problem. The 24-year-old English striker is expected to return only after the Christmas break.
“Yes, we got very bad news because in my mind he was almost ready to play again. He was very close but he could not tolerate the final step up in his rehab. We always wanted to try conservative rehab first under the guidance of specialists and he did get very close. We had to consult and in the end they decided to go in and see what’s wrong. He will be out certainly until Christmas.”
The Frenchman also gave insight on the fitness of Jack Wilshere and insisted that the 23-year-old is recovering slower than anticipated from an ankle injury sustained in training and would be unavailable for selection for Saturday’s clash against Stoke. The 65-year-old did add that all the players who went to fulfill their international duties have returned unscathed.
“He is progressing slowly. Unfortunately he will not be available for Saturday.”