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'I think we’ll see a different Carl’

Carl Jenkinson

What are Arsene Wenger’s right-back options for the Southampton game?

There’s Gabriel, who played most of Sunday’s win over Bournemouth in that position. Then there’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles, who filled the role at Nottingham Forest in the third round of the EFL Cup.

But it’s Carl Jenkinson who will get the manager’s vote of confidence by starting his third game in 11 days.

The England international is only just back from a long-term knee injury and Wenger is willing to give him time to recapture his best form.

"I rested him completely against Bournemouth because he played two big games and I felt he needed a breather"

“You forget that it’s a big ask [to come back from a big injury],” he told Arsenal.com.

“Carl is very conscientious and sometimes a bit anxious. It takes him time to play completely with freedom. He needs a run of games to play with freedom, so the fact that he can get another game… I think we’ll already see a different Carl.

“I rested him completely against Bournemouth because he played two big games and I felt he needed a breather. Sometimes, mentally three games in a week demands a lot. We’ll get him back tomorrow, put Gabriel in the centre and I will see for Saturday.”

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