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Wenger’s pre-Man Utd injury update on Cazorla, Sanchez & Bellerin
It’s been another busy day of team and injury news at Arsenal ahead of Saturday’s huge clash with Manchester United so here’s a round-up of Arsene Wenger’s updates.
The boss held his pre-match press conference on Thursday morning and understandably he was asked for the latest on Sanchez after a nervous few days surrounding the attacker.
Alexis suffered a hamstring injury last week while away with the Chile national team but was rushed back to start in their World Cup qualifier against Uruguay on Tuesday night.
Thankfully Sanchez came through the game unscathed, scoring two goals, and Wenger has revealed that the 27-year-old text him after the match to reassure him he was in ‘good shape’.
However, the boss says he will have to assess Alexis at training on Friday before making a decision over his involvement against United this weekend but he’ll rely on the player to give him an honest account of how the injury is feeling.
Wenger told Arsenal.com:
“I haven’t heard a lot [about his fitness] because we were in doubt 24 hours before the game against Uruguay,”
“We didn’t know if he’d play or not. In the end they decided to play him. He texted us to tell us he’s in good shape after the game. He came off after 84 minutes and now we have to wait. I see him tomorrow [Friday] morning and then I will see if he can be involved in the squad or not.
“What I will consider is the risk of injury because he played while recovering from a hamstring injury. I’ll consider the way he feels as well. On that front you depend on the honesty of the player, how they feel and how they recover.”
So it’s looking positive on Sanchez featuring at Old Trafford, however, there wasn’t such good news on Santi Cazorla or Hector Bellerin who are both facing more time on the sidelines.
Bellerin pulled out of the Spanish under-21’s squad last week after complaining of pain in his ankle and Wenger has confirmed the right-back has been ruled out for four weeks from an injury picked up against Tottenham.
Cazorla hasn’t featured in any of our last five matches after aggravating a long-standing Achilles injury against Ludogorets last month and Wenger has revealed that the midfielder is still not able to train and he has no idea when he’ll be back.
The boss told Arsenal.com:
Hector is out for four weeks. He got injured in the last 10 seconds against Spurs after a very strong tackle by Danny Rose.
Cazorla is still out. I don’t know exactly how long for. He’s still not even out in training yet.
It’s obviously a huge blow that Bellerin has been ruled out and it’s going to be interesting to see who Wenger picks at right-back against United. My best guess would be Carl Jenkinson coming in but whoever it is will be a big downgrade on Hector.
The news on Cazorla is also concerning as it sounds like he’s still a while away from being available again so we have to hope his Achilles calms down and he’s able to get back on the pitch soon.