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Arsenal are in pole position ahead of Sunday’s clash against the current Premier League Champions Chelsea.
The Blues will be without Danny Drinkwater until October after the midfielder was ruled out with a calf problem.
Drinkwater was listed as a slight doubt for the game this weekend and some were hopeful he would shake off the problem in time for the arrival of Arsenal’s lambs to Chelsea’s slaughter, when he could make his debut.
That’s now on hold as the 27-year-old, who cost Antonio Conte £35m on deadline day, was ruled out.
“He had a muscular problem in his calf. He needs time to recover,” said manager Antonio Conte.
“I think it is very difficult to see him before the international break. It is a pity because he was starting to work and to improve his physical condition.
“Now we have to move all these situations. And in two, three weeks, four weeks, I don’t know.”
Eden Hazard, however, could feature for the Blues after two substitute appearances after the ankle injury he picked up while on international duty in June. “About Eden, he is improving and to have this type of patience is paying off,” Conte said.
“He is very close to be totally fit and to continue in this way.
“I have to make decision for the team and the best decision for the players.
“I think he is improving a lot and is very close to being 100 per cent.
“For Gary [Cahill] he came back against Qarabag, he played very well with a good performance. I am pleased for him. I have another day to reflect and make the best decision for Sunday.”