Eddie Nketiah and Reiss Nelson are both in the squad to face Lazio in Stockholm on Saturday night, in Arsenal’s final pre-season friendly before the real football begins next weekend.
Jeorge Bird reports that both youngsters will join the first team again in Sweden, after taking part in the majority of the tour so far.
The number of youngsters involved has slowly reduced over the last few weeks, as more players return from the World Cup, and there’s no word yet on whether Emile Smith Rowe and Joe Willock will travel.
If those two don’t feature, it’s likely because Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira are taking their places, after extended holidays. Unai Emery confirmed earlier in the week that “Nacho Monreal, Lucas [Torreira] & Xhaka will start to play some minutes on Saturday”.
Monreal will have to come in as soon as possible, because he’ll be needed against Manchester City next weekend. After completing most of pre-season, Sead Kolasinac picked up a very unfortunate injury against Chelsea which will keep him out for 8-10 weeks.
As for Stephan Lichtsteiner, we’ll have to wait and see if he plays any part in Saturday night’s match, because he didn’t get a mention from Emery. The Arsenal website appears to be suggesting he could be involved too though.
Meanwhile, rumours on social media suggest Torreira is the closest of the returning players to full fitness. He reportedly has a “good chance” to be fit for the City game.