By Richard Clarke

Arsène Wenger has to decide on the fitness of Manuel Almunia and Emmanuel Adebayor ahead of the weekend clash with Aston Villa at Emirates Stadium.

The Arsenal keeper is still recovering from the head injury he suffered against Manchester United last Saturday. The 31-year-old has returned to training but he needs to be fully tested in a match scenario. That will happen on Friday. Until then he is 70:30 to play.

Adebayor’s chances are slightly more remote but it is still very possible the Togolese striker could return after missing the last three games with an ankle injury. He is rated at 50:50.

Robin van Persie (suspension) and Emmanuel Eboue (knee) will be missing again.

“We will assess the situation of Adebayor on Friday,” Wenger told Arsenal TV Online on Thursday afternoon. “He is 50:50.

“We have to assess Almunia too. He got that knock on his head against Manchester United and until now we have not exposed him. He has to go into a normal game [in training] to see how he deals with it. So he is 70:30 at the moment.

“Van Persie is still suspended and Eboue is not fit.”

Arsenal TV Online subscribers can see the full interview on Friday morning. In it, Wenger talks about: another Carling Cup victory, Jay Simpson’s long journey to the first team, another world-class Carlos Vela finish, whether that display influences his transfer plans, his early thoughts ahead of the January window, Mikael Silvestre’s surprise French call-up, the problem of consistent inconsistency, coming down after a Carling Cup win, Ashley Young and Gabriel Agbonlahor and the top four being the ‘Big Four’.

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13 Nov 2008