Emery Hopes For Quick Mustafi Return

Emery Hopes For Quick Mustafi Return

Unai Emery is hoping to have Shkodran Mustafi available for Arsenal’s Boxing Day trip to Brighton. The Gunners are facing something of a defensive injury crisis, with Nacho Monreal becoming the latest player to pick up a problem as he was forced off with a muscular issue during the first half of Saturday’s 3-1 victory over Burnley.

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Monreal joins the likes of Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin on the treatment table, but Emery is hoping to have German international Mustafi available for their festive trip to The Amex, with the 26-year-old closing in on a return to full fitness following a hamstring strain that has seen him miss Arsenal’s last four matches.

Asked about the decision to replace Monreal during Saturday’s match, Emery told reporters: “He started to have a muscular problem and we decided not to take a chance.

“We’ve been forced into an early change here, with Monreal needing to come off – and that’s seen us change our system to at the back. “I don’t know if he can play at Brighton. Mustafi is close for Brighton.”

Arsenal will need all hands on deck during the busy festive period, as, following the clash with Brighton, they will face further matches against Liverpool next Saturday and Fulham on New Year’s Day.

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