Mkhitaryan a doubt for Burnley as Mustafi and Bellerin remain sidelined

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Arsenal have doubts over Henrikh Mkhitaryan ahead of tomorrow’s Premier League clash with Burnley at the Emirates.

In latest bulletin from the medical team its been revealed that he has picked up an ankle problem and is being assessed ahead of what is a must-win fixture after two successive defeats.

The defensive issues faced by Unai Emery haven’t been eased by the continued absence of Shkodran Mustafi (hamstring) and Hector Bellerin (calf) who are due to return to training in a week and two weeks respectively.

Emile Smith Rowe has a hip injury, while Dinos Mavropanos continues his rehabilitation from a groin problem but won’t be back to provide cover over the festive period.

If Mkhitaryan does miss out, it would increase the spotlight on Mesut Ozil who was left out of the squad for the North London derby on Wednesday. Unai Emery is due to meet the press later today and you can be sure he’ll be asked about the enigmatic German playmaker.

We’ll have all the news from the press conference here later on.

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Episode 506 – NÖzil

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Chidi
Chidi

Whatever happens, please leave Granit out of CB.

Emyrates
Emyrates

So case for Özii… Smit Rowe?

Timsh
Timsh

Smith-Row is injured as stated in this very article.

Ramsey the more likely option.
Maybe a 4-3-3 with Xhaka, Guen and Torreira + Ramsey and Iwobi or, even better, both strikers on the pitch!?

Do you think some players would get behind Özil and tell the coaching staff that they need him?
Can Per do anything to act as a mediator?
Questions…questions…

Deano

We really are cursed with injuries!

On the Ozil situation at least we got rid of Sanchez with some of the reports about him today, wow that is actually lower than even moron-ho.

OnAnyBlock
OnAnyBlock

I’d say be careful about narratives that are created around certain players/stories that are fed to the media.

Not to stick up for Sanchez, but there are many footballers failing drug tests and much worse, yet these things are handled ‘in-house’, so I’d just question why a supposed text message has been leaked or reactions at a training ground to a toxic manager being fired

Alex
Alex

If Emery is a reliable coach, then no Özil tomorrow: Bournemouth too physical, Spurs too strong… then i don’t see what this player has to do with Arsenal in PL. Let’s be honest and coherent.
Btw, it’s rather Emery who is enigmatic… at least for me.

Goontang
Goontang

I read that 3 times and still have no idea what your trying to suggest. Sp*rs too strong has never been said in my life time.

Goontang
Goontang

I will be gobsmacked if Xhaka starts at center back again.

Bob
Bob

With Mustafi still out and Koscielny looking a shadow of himself I worried he will..

Alex
Alex

Btw, many praise the fact Arsenal is the most running team in PL. But are we first ? Where are City and Liverpool in this list?

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I dunno, how was Klopp in his first 6 months of Liverpool? What did Pep win in his first season?

Scott P
Scott P

Not sure, but I think he means are we actually first of the km run list, not first in the league.

Jack
Jack

Ramsey playing just behind Auba and Laca again?

Thierry Bergkamp
Thierry Bergkamp

So, I’m guessing Mustafi and Bellerin have had setbacks, they were back in training yesterday.

Richie

No they weren’t, what you saw was an old photo.

Thierry Walcott
Thierry Walcott

The training picture posted by Emery yesterday was a picture from before the injuries to Mustafi and Hector so it was misread.

Rostock Gooner
Rostock Gooner

They weren’t, it was just an old pic.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

This injury risk, whatever you think of Mkhi’s form, is why I was so concerned about playing a strong team on Wednesday.

What good is your strongest team if they are half injured and half-tired?

Rostock Gooner
Rostock Gooner

Totally agree with you. Playing a team full of squad players and youngster would have told Sp*rs that they can f*** off regardless of the results since we smashed them in the important match…

Bob
Bob

If we’d won then we’d be praising the built momentum, beating spurs and getting back to winning ways so quickly. It’s fine margins.

Hantal
Hantal

I’d expect Ramsey to take his place. Hopefully Xhaka back into midfield too

Richie

Tomorrow I really hope it’s back to basics, no messing around, actually be winning at half time, and no need to change formation and make halftime substitutions. 4-2-3-1. Leno – Mr Leitchsteiner, Koscielny, Sokratis, Monreal – Torreira Xhaka – Ozil, Ramsey, Aubameyang – Lacazette.

Screamer
Screamer

Fuck no

Hantal
Hantal

Agreed. It’s becoming a bit of a habit more than a big tactical switch at the moment

Mother
Mother

I totally agree with this! I’ve been scratching my head over the last few weeks, trying to figure out why Emery has changed the formation / team shape so much when it clearly doesn’t work.

Our defenders are dropping all over the place – so Emery’s answer is to play with THREE makeshift CBs!? He decides to sacrifice the metronome of the team (Xhaka) and has started to drop Lacazette again for an underperforming Mhiki.

Hopefully he’ll get things right on Saturday and this poor run ends.

Rich
Rich

Iwobi has been unlucky to be subbed in the last 2 games, he’s the only player we have who’ll comfortably have a pop at opposing full backs, he’s a bit like Alexis used to be for us, but without the end product, whilst i certainy wouldn’t say no to an upgrade in the wide areas, the reality is that Iwobi is currently our best fit on the left.

Hantal
Hantal

Iwobi is pretty inconsistent at the minute but he is taking people on and trying hard

Wolsty
Wolsty

Disagree, Iwobi hardly ever plays 90 minutes, probably due to his workrate which you can’t fault, but his end product is poor as you’ve said. I’d play Rambo or Mesut on the left and let them cut inside…with Nacho overlapping down the left….

Richie

Kolašinac has actually been better than Iwobi on the wide left in the last few weeks (in my opinion, i haven’t checked any stats). He doesn’t have Iwobi skills or quick feet but his end product seems better and he gets the ball into the box more than Iwobi does.

Gunnery
Gunnery

More worried about defence than attack to be honest.

Pressing from the front also allows us easier winning back of the ball. If Ozil plays will we lose that ability to give our defence relatively easier situations to deal with?

Gunnery
Gunnery

Although I have to say that for all Mkhi’s pressing work he equally turns over possession easily for a cheap counter.

Naked cygan
Naked cygan

This is bull shit!!

Bob
Bob

Ramsey and Iwobi please

henry
henry

enigmatic German playmaker? Lol

Pakgooner
Pakgooner

What about Kola?

Richie

Think he’s still injured.