By Joe Brewin

Rachel Yankey believes Kelly Smith’s return from injury will give Arsenal Ladies a huge boost ahead of a crucial run of Women’s Super League fixtures - starting with Birmingham on Sunday.

The England striker rejoined the club alongside Alex Scott and Gemma Davison in March but has yet to feature after picking up an ankle injury on international duty.

Smith was an unused substitute for last week’s 3-0 Continental Cup victory over Chelsea and Yankey expects her to be as strong as ever.

“It is a massive plus for us,” the midfielder told Arsenal.com. “We signed Kelly, Alex [Scott] and Gemma [Davison] together and we were just unfortunate that Kelly was injured while away with England.

“She hasn't actually played a game for us yet so I think it will be a big boost. She has been with us back in training for the last week on a non-contact basis so hopefully when we come back from our England trip she will have had a few more sessions.

“But she looks really sharp and to be honest she doesn't look any different to how she used to. I think it will take her a while to get match fit but you can already see some of those technical qualities where you wouldn't even know anything has been wrong with her.

“We look forward to her coming back and strengthening the team.”

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 19 Jun 2012