Both Nacho Monreal and Hector Bellerin actively participated in the recent training session with their fellow Arsenal players at London Colney to keep their fans optimistic that they could play on Sunday against Tottenham Hotspurs. The Spanish professional footballers are yet to fully recover from their injuries ahead of their North London derby clash at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday. With only a few days to go before the long-awaited match, soccer lines continue to focus on the Arsene Wenger as he contemplates on the best squad to field against their hometown rivals.
Even though the availability of Bellerin and Monreal still casts some shadow of doubt for Arsenal, the defenders kept fans hope alive by attending a training session on Thursday ahead of the North London derby. The Spaniards did not feature in the squad that propelled the Gunners’ to another Champions League win over Ludogorets in midweek. Their absence even on the bench still keeps Bellerin and Monreal sidelined due to fitness doubts for the upcoming crucial head-to-head clash with the Spurs on Sunday. However, Arsene Wenger could field both players if their training on Thursday at London Colney motivates them to recover from their injuries ahead of their match at the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal’s head coach still has other injury woes, including Kieran Gibbs who is the most recent player to join the list of injured players after he ended up with a hurt shoulder on Wednesday. Again, an Achilles injury will keep Santi Cazorla sidelined, while the English professional footballer Theo Walcott, who is also Arsenal’s second top scorer so far this season after Alexis Sanchez has the greatest chance to be fit after nursing a hamstring problem.
Arsenal manager expressed his sentiments about the injury situation at the club, saying many players remain unfit to play, which bring about some uncertainties at the moment. He also mentioned that Kieran Gibbs’ shoulder injury is yet to heal properly, but his likely return on Sunday could boost the team tremendously. Wenger further stated that Walcott, Monreal and Cazorla could not travel to Bulgaria on Tuesday, but the most likely player to bounce back to the squad is Walcott. He is expected to go through some clinical tests to ascertain his fitness. However, some uncertainty still surround the presence of the other players.
Monreal’s inclusion in the squad still hangs in the balance as well, as his doctors will test him to decide if he has what it takes to play on Sunday. The same applies to Cazorla although he is yet to show up for any practice session, but he might go out today for practice to decide his fitness levels. Arsene Wenger says he is still a doubt, while his Spanish counterpart Hector Bellerin is likely to recover fully because he did not even feature in the Gunner’s trip to Bulgaria.
Wenger also expressed that Hector would have a test before the Sunday fixture and his exclusion from the squad for the midweek clash against Ludogorets was justified because the manager was cautious about his fitness. He could have traveled with his teammates, but the French manager felt he should be rested to keep him fully fit for Sunday’s showdown in the North London derby.