Mikel Arteta has confirmed that Granit Xhaka is ahead of schedule in his recovery from injury and hopes to be able to call on the midfielder before the end of the year.
The Switzerland international revealed this week his recovery from medial knee ligament damage has been slowed due to a bone break but that he’s now making good progress.
The Gunners have been without the 30-year-old since the north London derby win over Sp*rs.
“Hopefully, he’ll be a little bit sooner than expected,” Arteta said in his pre-Newcastle press conference.
“He’s training and pushing himself and the staff so hard as he always does.
“He’s in a good place, he’s evolving well and hopefully we can have him a bit earlier. We have to see still, it’s a bit early to decide.””
Asked if that might mean he’s in contention before January, Arteta said, “I hope so, yes.”
The boss also confirmed that there were no further injury concerns for Saturday’s game. Arsenal are looking to bounce back after a 4-0 defeat at Anfield and could climb temporarily into the top four with a win.