Arsenal boss confirms injury blow but duo could return to face Tottenham

By on November 16, 2017

Arsene Wenger has confirmed Olivier Giroud is set to miss Saturday’s clash with Tottenham but Shkodran Mustafi and Danny Welbeck could return to the squad.

Giroud linked-up with his country during the international break and picked up a thigh injury during the pre-match warm up ahead of France’s friendly with Wales last Friday night.

Frustratingly, the striker was given anti-inflammatories in order to start the meaningless game but aggravated the injury and was withdrawn shortly after scoring in the 71st minute.

Giroud was sent back to London Colney to be assessed by Arsenal’s medical team and while the injury isn’t thought to be serious, Wenger feels it’s enough to keep him out of the North London Derby.

There was more positive news regarding the fitness of Mustafi as the centre-back is in-line to return to the squad this weekend after overcoming a hamstring strain.

Mustafi sustained the injury while away with Germany during the October international break and has missed our last seven games in all competitions.

However, he’s back in full training and while Wenger says a final decision will be made over his availability on Friday, I think we’ll see Mustafi back in the squad against Spurs.

danny welbeck arsenal

The boss also confirmed that he’ll make a late decision over the involvement of Welbeck as the striker looks to make his comeback from a month out with a groin injury.

Danny picked up the problem during the defeat at Watford last month but has been in full training this week and should be back in contention this weekend – which is a boost considering Giroud has been ruled out.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference this morning, Wenger is quoted by the Express as saying:

“Mustafi will have a final check tomorrow, Welbeck as well, I will make decisions on them tomorrow.”

“Giroud picked up an injury, I don’t think he will be available. It’s short term, we have to assess him on Monday.”

I watched the press conference and Wenger also suggested that Laurent Koscielny will be available despite feeling pain in his Achilles while away with France this week, so that’s a big relief.

The boss didn’t give any update on David Ospina, Calum Chambers or Rob Holding but the trio are all expected to be available after missing the Man City game before the international break.