Arsene Wenger has revealed the latest team news ahead of Saturday's Premier League game against Sunderland:
on the team news…The players injured in the last two weeks will not play tomorrow and who is back maybe in the squad could be Laurent Koscielny and Theo Walcott. That will be a decision tomorrow morning.
on players coming back…It is positive as we are a bit short.
on when Alexis and Cazorla are coming back…I don’t know, honestly. Alexis is a hamstring [injury] but I don’t know how long it will take, it is usually a quick one to recover. Cazorla we don’t know until he sees a specalist. There is no news on that.
on coming back in March…It is possible, yes.
on being the most injury-prone team over five years…I don’t know… for example with these injuries you count Abou Diaby who was injured a lot here and has gone to Marseille and still does not play. I believe that is a debate that I will leave to specialists but… it is not difficult to compare our injuries across Europe with all the leagues and I don’t think we have more injuries than everybody.
on how the medical team has changed in the last 20 years…I would like to invite you to see one day. We have plenty of people. When arrived here it was me, my two assistants and Gary Lewin, but today you have a team around you. That has changed and I think that has changed everywhere. It is much more sophisticated, much more scientific, but human beings are still human beings.
on whether players say they're fit when they’re not…Yes, but we have tests as well, we have medical tests. We are quite sophisticated in testing our players. I had a chat with Alexis after his injury and he was adamant he felt perfect before the game because we tested his strength, stretching, all the signs we test every week were perfect. There was no obvious sign or alert before the game - it happened, do I have to take the blame? I do, but there was not an obvious mistake to select him before the game.
on whether it would ever be a judgement call when listening to player…It happens in extreme circumstances. If you ask me when you play a cup final, you don’t listen too much to the players because they are all 'fit'! But in normal situations, sometimes you have to get the feeling from the player because at the end of the day you have to trust them.
Copyright 2021 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.