Press conference

Could Rob Holding return for the derby?


It has been a long road back for Rob Holding - but could he make his return in Sunday's north London derby?

Unai Emery was asked about the young centre back's recovery, and those of Hector Bellerin and Kieran Tierney. This is what he told the media:

on Rob Holding...
Rob Holding is training with us, playing with the under-23s but he is not 100 per cent to play on Sunday with us. We are working with him one way, playing with the under-23s and training with us, and also testing his performance each day and with each match with the under-23s. We think now he is getting better, he can play one match but not with the intensity we want on Sunday, for example.

on Bellerin and Tierney...
Really, we have to be calm but also we have to be demanding with their recovery, because we need them. That international break is going to give us two weeks to test them better than before, because now my focus with the team is the players that will be available on Sunday and to prepare with them. After that match, we will test different players and how they can be closer to us, to the team, to start playing with us.

on Mesut Ozil...
This week he is training well, he is progressing physically better and doing normal work for us. He is going to be closer for us and available for Sunday I think.

on whether Ozil will still be an Arsenal player at the end of the European window...
Yes, we’ve finished our transfer window and in Europe it’s going to finish on Monday. We cannot sign another player but we have some players who have the possibility to leave before the window closes. The club is working and some players know their situation. My focus and the team's focus is for the game on Sunday and being very concentrated on Sunday.

on whether Mesut could leave...
No, we are not speaking about the possibility he could leave.

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