Arsene Wenger expects Mesut Ozil to be fit for Arsenal’s Premier League meeting with Norwich City on Saturday. Ozil, who has made such a big impact since his club-record transfer from Real Madrid, scored Germany’s opening goal in their 5-3 in Sweden on Tuesday but was later forced to exit the match with a knee injury. In his first press conference since getting his squad back from international duty, Wenger revealed that the problem was nothing serious, but that Ozil would face a further examination on Friday.
“He is all right,” he said, according to Arsenal.com. “He came back with a knock on the knee but it was just a kick. We’ll have a test tomorrow to see if he is fit enough for Saturday or not. When you have not played, there is always a little doubt but not a major one.”
There has also been some concern about another of the key players in propelling Arsenal to the top of the Premier League. Aaron Ramsey reportedly had a slight problem in his thigh after continuing his incredible scoring run by netting in Wales’s 1-1 result with Belgium. But the midfielder is expected to be fit to take on Norwich at the Emirates Stadium.
The good news for Arsenal is that the club’s list of injuries is slowly shortening. There should be a big boost for the Gunners, with Santi Cazorla, who hasn’t played for the club since Sept. 1, set to return to the squad on Saturday. Wenger also expects Bacary Sagna to be back in contention.
“Sagna is 80 percent fit and he will have a test,” he said. “Cazorla is available in training but he is not match-fit. It is just about competitiveness with him. There is a possibility both are in the squad for Saturday. I have not decided whether they will start or not.”
With Cazorla having been out for a significant period of time and the team functioning well in his absence, it seems likely that the Spaniard will start on the bench. Tomas Rosicky’s return to fitness further reduces the need to rush Cazorla back.
However, Theo Walcott, who had an operation on his abdomen last month, is still two weeks away from a return, Wenger confirmed. Arsenal remain short of options up front, with Yaya Sanogo and Lukas Podolski likely not available until the middle of next month. The same is true for Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain, who suffered a knee injury on an opening day loss to Aston Villa that now seems a lifetime ago.
There is still no news about a return for Abou Diaby. The midfielder suffered the latest in a long line of serious injuries when he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in March. One man still hoping that the 27-year-old makes a full recovery is France manager Didier Deschamps. Diaby scored France’s opening goal of the World Cup qualifying campaign and Deschamps appears eager for him to make it to Brazil next year.
“I sent him a message of good will and he got it,” he said before Tuesday’s qualifier with Finland. “This is not the first time he suffered a pretty serious injury. Todays he is not active, but I am keen for him to recover quickly.”