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Team News: Arsenal duo could miss Spurs but key man set to return
Arsene Wenger has been speaking at his press conference this morning and offered a team news update ahead of Arsenal’s huge north London derby against Tottenham on Sunday afternoon.
The boss confirmed that Santi Cazorla and Nacho Monreal remain doubts and will require late fitness tests to see if they’ll be able to feature this weekend but Hector Bellerin should return for the game.
Cazorla has missed the last four games in all competitions with an achilles injury that he suffered during the 6-0 thrashing of Ludogorets at the Emirates in mid-September.
Wenger says the midfielder could return to training today and they will assess how he responds over the coming days but the Spaniard remains a doubt to face Spurs on Sunday.
Monreal has also sat out the last three matches with a thigh problem and the full-back will undergo fitness tests today and tomorrow before his availability will be determined.
With the boss also revealing that Kieran Gibbs is a doubt due to a shoulder injury which he sustained in midweek, we suddenly look exposed at left-back so let’s hope at least one of the duo are passed fit.
However, there was some positive news as Wenger confirmed that Hector Bellerin’s injury isn’t serious and he could have ‘forced’ him to play against Ludogorets on Tuesday night.
The Spaniard will have a test today but the boss is confident he’ll be passed fit to face Tottenham on Sunday which will obviously be a huge boost.
Here is what the boss told Arsenal.com:
Hector has a test. I left him behind [in midweek] because I was cautious with him. We could have basically forced the issue, he could have played maybe in Bulgaria but he should be alright [for Sunday].
He has tests today and tomorrow and then we will decide.
He is similar, he has not practised yet – he will try to go out today and we will see where we go from there. He is a doubt, yes.
Back Arsenal for the win
We head in to the game in excellent form having not lost since the opening day of the new season almost three months ago so understandably we’re now right up there in the Premier League odds for the title with many bookmakers offering us as third favourites at 5/1.
Another win over Tottenham on Sunday would surely see those odds shorten even further and we should be confident of picking up all three points as our fierce rivals haven’t won in any of their last six matches in all competitions following last night’s 1-0 home defeat in the Champions League.
I’d back us to beat Tottenham on Sunday and fancy us to secure a 2-1 win, which can be found at odds of around 15/2, while I also like the look of Alexis Sanchez to open the scoring at 5/1.