By Declan Taylor

The injury to Cesc Fabregas will not force Arsène Wenger to shelve his new formation because he is confident that his squad can cover for their captain.

The influential Spaniard has excelled at the heart of Arsenal’s new 4-3-3 set-up, scoring twice in the Gunners’ 6-1 victory over Everton before another superb display against Celtic last week.

However, Fabregas picked up a hamstring strain during Saturday’s Premier League clash with Portsmouth and was replaced by Aaron Ramsey at half-time. The injury will certainly keep the 22-year-old out of Wednesday’s second leg against Celtic but Wenger is not planning a formation reshuffle.

In Ramsey the manager believes he could have a ready-made replacement. And, speaking at Tuesday’s press-conference, Wenger revealed his ambitions for the young Welshman.

“I still have the personnel who can come in,” the manager insisted. “I will see.

“The only thing I know from tomorrow is that Cesc will not be in the squad.

“It is another chance for Ramsey. It’s a big season for him but don’t forget he is only 18.

“I believe his target for this year, I told him before the season, [is] between 15 and 20 games.

“The way he is developing, he could get that.”

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25 Aug 2009