By Chris Harris
Arsène Wenger will welcome back Manuel Almunia for Saturday’s clash with Birmingham but Arsenal have fresh injury worries as they resume their Premier League campaign.
Almunia has missed six games with a chest infection but could replace Vito Mannone between the posts this weekend.
However Nicklas Bendtner, Gael Clichy, Carlos Vela and Eduardo will not be available and Lukasz Fabianksi will have to wait a little longer for his comeback after a minor setback in his recovery from knee surgery.
“Some players are not even back yet [from international duty],” explained Wenger at his pre-match press conference.
“Vela has not landed, so he will not be involved. We lost Nicklas Bendtner today in training from a recurrence of his groin. Eduardo is not back yet, because he still has a [thigh] injury.
“Fabianski is not completely back,” added Wenger. “We hope he will be very soon, because he has trained normally. Gael Clichy has a small [ankle] injury, and I leave him out completely tomorrow, but Abou Diaby should be okay.
“We have a few knocks and bruises which we discovered in training when the players come back. But Almunia is back in the squad and available. Cesc Fabregas had a few personal issues but they are going better now. He is available for tomorrow. Arshavin is back and available as well.”
Samir Nasri, Denilson and Johan Djourou are the three other names on Arsenal’s injury list and the Frenchman could be back in time for the North London derby at the end of October.
“Nasri is not back yet; he is still two weeks from playing competitive football,” confirmed Wenger.Copyright 2013 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 16 Oct 2009