Team news: Triple injury boost for Arsenal as Emery confirms Xhaka absence

By on November 1, 2019

Arsenal boss Unai Emery has confirmed Granit Xhaka won’t be involved against Wolves this weekend as the fall out continues from his bust-up with the fans during our 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace last weekend.

Unless you’ve been living on the moon for the past week, you’ll know Xhaka had a meltdown after being jeered while walking slowly off the pitch in the second half. He threw the armband to the ground, flung his arms around, told the Arsenal fans to f*** off, tossed his shirt to the floor and stormed down the tunnel.

The midfielder eventually issued a statement last night but it stopped short of being a full-blow apology and Emery has now confirmed Xhaka won’t be involved tomorrow as he wants 100% focus on the game.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference this afternoon, Emery told Arsenal.com:

“It’s not in my mind that he will play tomorrow. I think that tomorrow, he is not going to play. I think that now, we need to be focused on the match at 100 per cent. Now we are going to train but at the moment, he’s not in my mind [to play].

“Xhaka’s issues last week is one issue that needs time to recover the normality with him and with us.”

So we won’t see Xhaka against Wolves and I think that’s the right decision given the circumstances but it looks like Joe Willock, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Sead Kolasinac will all be in contention.

The Mirror reported on Thursday that the trio were doubts to face Wolves after leaving Anfield limping following Arsenal’s crazy 5-5 draw with Liverpool in the League Cup on Wednesday night.

However, there was no mention of Willock, Maitland-Niles or Kolasinac in Arsenal’s official team news update this afternoon so it looks like they are all available for selection this weekend. I doubt any of them will start the game but they’ll be options for the bench.

That means the only absentee for Arsenal, other than Xhaka, is Reiss Nelson as he’s still on the sidelines recovering from a knee injury that he sustained against Standard Liege almost a month ago.

Emery will recall several players against Wolves after resting the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe, Sokratis, Bernd Leno and David Luiz against Liverpool in midweek.