With Arsenal already securing qualification to the knockouts, the participation of Alexis Sanchez is in doubt with Frenchman Olivier Giroud favourite to take his place in the lineup against PSG.
Top spot is up for grabs in Group A for Arsene Wenger & Co as they look to end November on a high with a morale boosting victory over PSG. However, given the injury worries in their line-up and the pedigree of players their opponents boast, the encounter certainly won’t be a stroll in the park for the Gunners.
Last time around at the Parc Des Princes, Arsenal escaped with a point despite being outplayed by PSG through the ninety minutes. A similar result marked their performance against Manchester United during the weekend and will hence spur Wenger to tinker his line-up a bit ahead of Wednesday’s game.
The North Londoners are still without the services of Santi Cazorla, Hector Bellerin, Lucas Perez, Per Mertesacker and Danny Welbeck, all of whom are yet to recover from their respective injuries. After playing two games in the space of 72 hours while carrying a hamstring injury, Alexis Sanchez’s participation is being questioned especially considering knockout qualification has already been confirmed.
The Chilean has been a work-horse for the Gunners, consistently delivering when called upon by Wenger but even he’ll need some rest, evident from his performance in the 2nd half at Old Trafford during the weekend. After commenting on the ‘suicidal decision’ to play the 27-year-old against Uruguay in Chile’s 3-1 win in the World Cup qualifiers, many have questioned the Arsenal boss’s move to play him against Manchester United.
No other player has played more for Arsenal than the 27-year-old’s 16 games this term with Sánchez, who tends to push to feature whenever he can, having not had a summer off since 2013. The Frenchman, however, defended his decision stating that,”He had a bit of tightness in his hamstring, but he was checked before the game. I follow the instructions of the medical staff and the player.”
“I have never forced anyone to play in my life. I’ve never demanded anyone should be injected to play. If a player is 100 percent, I make a decision. But the suggestions I have forced him to play are wrong, completely wrong.”
With Sanchez favoured to be rested for the Champions League clash, Olivier Giroud could return to the first-team fold once again having staked him claim with the equalizer against Manchester United during the weekend. The French international has been in good scoring form despite the limited playing time and could be primed to deliver against PSG in a clash that’ll effectively decide the winner of the group.