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Arsenal guaranteed without two injured stars against Sporting amid Jesus updateɗ



Mikel Arteta can’t be wrong. His Arsenal side top the Premier League table after beating Fulham 3-0 and are now five points clear with just 11 games to play.
After not even being brought to Portugal midweek for Leandro Trossard, it was the Belgian who made Premier League history in west London. The winger became the first player to register three assists in the first half of an away game, proving Arteta’s thoroughness.

There was uncertainty over his availability before the game, with 45 minutes having been put to bed. Three different scorers in three different ways and another ticked game. With Europa League action resuming on Thursday, there is little time left to linger.

Once again, Arteta will have to prove he is adept at rotating squads when continental action is weighed against domestic competition, as Crystal Palace are the last team to wait before the international break. How the head coach keeps his players fresh will be key to crossing the line as winners.

Despite the victory, perhaps the biggest benefit was the return of Gabriel Jesus on Sunday. “Big boost. The first leg today. We didn’t know if today was the right game,” Arteta admitted after the game. “He said to me a few days ago, ‘I’m missing something.’

Yesterday I looked him in the eye and he said ‘I’m ready’ I said ‘OK!’ So we had the opportunity to bring him in. “It’s the first step to give him that big boost. He looks clear, he looks ready and he immediately created those two big chances. It’s great to see him back.” The Brazilian hadn’t played for his club since November but now it’s huge good news for his teammates.

Meanwhile, as previously mentioned, Trossard started the match, although before the match Arteta said, “We took out Gabby [Jesus], Eddie [Nketiah] and Leo [Trossard].” His return, with Martin’s Odegaard playing and scoring, is a boost after illness swept through camp last week.

However, Nketiah will not return until after the international break. Arteta said: “We are testing him,” the Spaniard said in his pre-match press conference. “It’s a bit uncertain what will happen to him to be honest in training.

“Let’s see, let’s keep the options open. He’s very positive about it and hopefully it works out.

Mohamed Elneny is the only other long-term doubt as injury worries ease for the Spaniard.

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