Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Laurent Koscielny will miss Sunday’s North London derby against Tottenham Hotspur and hinted that Alex Song will continue to cover in the centre of defende alongside Per Mertesacker.
The French defender, who missed Tuesday night’s win over Olympiakos with an ankle problem sustained in a challenge with Bolton’s Reo-Coker, is thought to have failed a late fitness test.
Koscielny will be joined on the sidelines by Johan Djourou, who is still out with a hamstring problem, and Sebastian Squillaci, who despite returning to full training is lacking match fitness.
Arsene Wenger also confirmed that Thomas Vermaelen’s return to first team action will be delayed by a further two weeks. The Belgian had been tipped to return to action straight after the mid-October international break, but will now likely not feature until November.
“Vermaelen will be a fraction late. One or two weeks after the international break,” confirmed Wenger in his weekly press conference.