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Arsenal crisis as Wenger confirms 9th key player may miss Liverpool
Arsenal’s selection crisis looks to have deepened further after Arsene Wenger confirmed that Santi Cazorla is unlikely to be fit to face Liverpool on the opening weekend of the season.
The Merseysiders arrive at the Emirates for our first game of the new Premier League campaign in just under two weeks and Wenger is set to be without a host of key players for the game.
Mesut Ozil, Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud are almost certainly going to miss the game as they aren’t due to start pre-season training until later this week and will miss our tour of Scandinavia.
Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey have just started their pre-season preparations at London Colney and should travel to Norway for our game against Viking on Thursday but they are going to be short of match fitness to face Liverpool.
Per Mertesacker and Danny Welbeck are certain to miss out due to long-term injuries while Jack Wilshere could be facing a race against time after suffering a knee injury over the weekend – find out more on that story here.
However, yet another key man could be missing against Jurgen Klopp’s side as Arsene has now confirmed that Cazorla is lacking fitness and isn’t expected to be available for selection until late August.
Santi missed the final six months of last season with a serious knee injury and has only played 45 minutes of pre-season football so far, so the Spaniard is struggling to make himself available to face Liverpool.
The boss told Arsenal.com:
on how important Santi is…
He is our technical security in midfield and we missed him for five or six months last season. At the moment he is not completely there on the fitness front. That’s why I took him off at half-time. He’s a bit behind the others physically but I think he will be alright, maybe not on August 15th, but at the end of August he should be alright.
So it looks like we could be without as many as NINE first team regulars on the opening weekend of the season, which is a ridiculous number considering we haven’t kicked a competitive ball yet.
Fingers crossed Jack manages to make himself available and there’s a slight chance Ramsey and Alexis could be on the bench, but they won’t be anywhere near 100% fit and there’s no doubt we’re going to have to field a severally weakened side.
It’s a nightmare way to start the new season but this is Arsenal we’re talking about and it wouldn’t be the same if we didn’t have a long list of absentees to moan about.
Perhaps a couple of new signings would ease the situation? Just a thought, Arsene….