Arsenal and Unai Emery handed major double injury boost ahead of Crystal Palace clash

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Arsenal have been handed a welcome double fitness boost ahead of Sunday afternoon’s Premier League encounter with Crystal Palace.

The two teams are separated by just a single point in the table and will go into the game at the Emirates Stadium on the back of defeats in the league last time out.

The Gunners were beaten 1-0 by Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Monday night, while Palace suffered a 2-0 home loss at the hands of reigning champions Manchester City.

Up until last season, trips to the Emirates hadn’t been good for the Eagles as they hadn’t won in any of their five previous visits after being promoted to the top flight of English football in 2014.

However it was sixth time lucky in the corresponding fixture last season as Wilfried Zaha inspired the south Londoners to a 3-2 win back in April.

Unai Emery’s side will be looking to avenge that costly defeat – which ultimately cost them Champions League football this season – and there’s good news on the fitness front for the hosts ahead of the game.

Alexandre Lacazette looks set to be in contention to his first Premier League appearance at the Emirates Stadium since the 2-2 north London derby draw with Tottenham Hotspur at the beginning of last month.

The Frenchman made his return against the Blades as a substitute and played for 75 minutes of the 3-2 Europa League win over Vitoria on Thursday night before making way for Nicolas Pepe.

It wasn’t Lacazette’s best performance for the Gunners by any stretch as he was clearly lacking match sharpness, although he could be named on the bench.

The other injury boost is wonderkid Emile Smith Rowe.

Having suffered a clash of heads which forced him off against Nottingham Forest last month, the attacking midfielder was kept in reserve until the Vitoria clash.

He completed the game and there doesn’t appear to have been any setbacks which means he too is available for selection.

Furthermore, Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin and Kieran Tierney all got 90 minutes under their belts against Vitoria and will also be in contention to face Palace.

 

 

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