Arsenal have been without Laurent Koscielny for two weeks, but the Frenchman could be back in for Sunday’s FA Cup quarter-final against Watford.
That is, of course, good news. Unless he isn’t actually ready to play. The defender was unlikely to play this weekend according to Wenger just a few days ago and hasn’t trained with the team all week.
Injuries to Gabriel and Per Mertesacker in Tuesday’s win against Hull City left Arsenal a little light at the back, and Koscielny may get the nod over the Brazilian, who is also struggling to be fully fit.
“Koscielny is not far,” Wenger said on Friday afternoon. “Will I risk him or not? Maybe there will be a little medical risk, I don’t know, I haven’t made a decision yet.
“He has to join in normal training tomorrow and then (it’s down to me) to take a gamble with a guy who has had just one training session with the group or not.
“After advice from medical people, to take a gamble if he’s available, I will do it.”
With Barcelona on Wednesday night and Everton on Saturday, I know that I’d rather not risk losing Koscielny for even longer. The FA Cup is huge but we do have the quality to beat Watford without him, with no disrespect to the Hornets. Calum Chambers, Gabriel and even Nacho Monreal are adept defenders.
If Koscielny does feature on Sunday, we can only hope it’s because he’s fully fit rather than because the manager is rolling the dice.