Arsene Wenger looks like he will turn to Mohamed Elneny to replace Aaron Ramsey in the Arsenal squad as the Welshman recovers from his latest injury setback.
Ramsey will spend at least the next four weeks on the sidelines with a thigh problem that he picked up on Tuesday against Hull.
Wenger admitted that he thought Ramsey would be ok for this weekend before the full extent of the injury was revealed.
On Friday afternoon at his press conference, he told reporters that Ramsey was not out for the season, contrary to reports in parts of the media.
With Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also sidelined, it looks as if Elneny will be handed the central midfield mantle to carry on until his legs fall off.
“He looks like he is ready to play,” Arsene said. “I consider every formula that is possible to give us a balance. At the moment, I think Elneny in central midfield can cope.
“We have Flamini; we have Coquelin, who can cope as well. They have shown [that] already. The formula can change as well if needed but that depends on the games. Every game will be different now.
“In our job, you want to perform in the next game and the next game is an important one because we have fought hard to get there and that is our purpose. After that, we deal with the next one.
“If you have a good run, you sometimes absorb them without any problems. If you have a bad result, of course, there is no time to digest sometimes and to get the belief back in the squad. We want to do that and what is very important is to be in there and have a chance to show how good you are.“
Elneny has certainly impressed since he was signed from FC Basel in the summer.
Not only is he a box-to-box dynamo with great ability and an eye for a pass – he can’t half hit that ball as his long-range effort that cracked the bar showed!