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Injuries Hit Gunners Ahead of Cardiff Clash

  • Guardian, Tuesday, December 31, 2013 2:33 PM
Premier League leader Arsenal is facing a mini injury-crisis ahead of its New Year’s Day clash with Cardiff City, Coach Arsene Wenger revealed Tuesday. Striker Olivier Giroud, midfielders Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey, and defender Kieran Gibbs are definitely out, while defenders Nacho Monreal and Thomas Vermaelen, midfielders Tomas Rosicky and Jack Wilshere and forward Theo Walcott are all facing fitness tests ahead of Wednesday’s home game.

"You need a good memory because we have plenty of problems," the Gunners coach said, noting that Ramsey will be out for three weeks, while Ozil will be out for an unspecified amount of time, and Giroud will most likely just miss the Cardiff game. That means Wenger must decide whether to start Lukas Podolski, who scored on his return from a four-month injury layoff at Upton Park, or Nicklas Bendtner in attack. "Nobody knows what will happen because Bendtner is coming back in good shape now. Podolski is back, so we have a bit more choice up front," the Frenchman said.

When asked whether Arsenal would be looking for a new striker during the transfer window, which opens on New Year’s Day, Wenger replied: "We are like many clubs, we are certainly on alert if something special turns up we will not turn it down, but we are not as well desperate because we have a big depth in our squad.”

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