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Arsenal team news: 2 ruled out, Ramsey/Ozil/etc fit + Welbeck latest
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been speaking at his pre-match press conference this morning and has offered a team news update ahead of the visit of Watford on Tuesday night.
The boss has confirmed that he’ll need to make a check on some players following our FA Cup victory at Southampton on Saturday night but thankfully we don’t have any fresh injury worries to deal with.
It means that Santi Cazorla is currently our only long-term absentee with the Spanish midfielder continuing to recover from an Achilles injury that’s kept him out since October and he’s not expected back for at least another month.
The only other player who isn’t available for selection to face Watford tomorrow is Granit Xhaka with the Swiss international serving the second of his four-game suspension following his dismissal against Burnley last weekend.
Wenger also confirmed that everybody who wasn’t involved on Saturday is fit and available for selection meaning the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil and Laurent Koscielny will return tomorrow night.
With the squad in excellent health, Arsene has plenty of options to choose from and Danny Welbeck has given the boss a selection dilemma up front after making an excellent return to the first team at the weekend.
After spending over seven months on the sidelines with a knee injury, Welbeck made his long-awaited return to the starting eleven on Saturday and scored two superb goals against Southampton.
Wenger has admitted the striker is looking sharp but has urged caution as he still thinks Danny needs to be carefully managed as he still isn’t up to 100% fitness just yet. The boss also hinted that Welbeck won’t start against Watford after saying he isn’t ready to play every three days.
Wenger is quoted as saying by the Mirror:
“We have some people to check from Saturday. But all the players who stayed behind apart from Xhaka are available so we decide after training.”
“He [Welbeck] is very sharp but still not out of it completely – we still need to be careful with him.
“We still have to manage the times we use him and rest him in the next months. To come out of what he has been through you need to be mentally strong.”
But despite the caution, Wenger claimed that the 26-year-old has done enough to retain his starting spot.
“Of course he has done enough to keep his place. But we have to be cautious with him, I think he is a bit short to play every three days but the quality of the performance is there.”
It was great to see Welbeck back in action and scoring goals on Saturday but we certainly need to be careful with him as he’s been out for so long, so it makes sense for him not to start again tomorrow.
We’ve got Olivier Giroud, Alexis Sanchez and Lucas Perez all capable of playing through the middle plus plenty of options out wide so there’s no need to put too much pressure on Welbeck.