clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Key Arsenal attacking midfielder misses last training session ahead of Chelsea clash

New, comments
Arsenal v Chelsea - The Emirates FA Cup Final Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Uncharacteristically, Arsenal have a fairly sparse injury list, with only permanently crocked Santi Cazorla and hamstring javelin victim Francis Coquelin populating the treatment room usually reserved for swathes of players with muscle strains and other such unfortunate things.

Wenger however is sweating the fitness of two key players, and only one of them looks ready to face Chelsea tomorrow. After resting and rotating most of his squad for Thursday’s match, Arsenal were hoping to have both Aaron Ramsey and Mesul Özil available on Sunday. Wenger sounded confident enough about both earlier, but Özil was apparently nowhere to be found during Saturday’s training sesssion.

Even if he was training alone on the side, that’s hardly a strong endorsement for his availability against Chelsea.

While Özil can certainly divide opinion when it comes to the question of just how good he is, Arsenal are usually a much more dangerous side with him in the lineup then without, especially when his replacement is likely to be one of Welbeck or Walcott. Özil’s absence will also place added pressure on Alexis Sánchez, who was the one key player to play all 90 minutes on Thursday.

In a game that’s basically a must-win for Chelsea (for both competitive and psychological reasons), any possible advantage is a good advantage to have (as long as neither Walcott nor Welbeck decide to turn up and be good for once).