Unai Emery says Arsenal will have Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinc available for Saturday’s game with Burnley after both men missed the win at Newcastle. The Gunners made the shock announcement last Friday that they would travel to the northeast of England without two of their first-team regulars over security fears.
On the same day, the Metropolitan Police reported that two men had been arrested outside the house of Ozil, which is understood to now be under 24-hour guard.
The Sun have reported that the whole saga relates to the attempted robbery of the Arsenal pair in north-west London at the end of July, claiming Ozil and Kolasinac find themselves at the centre of a feud between gangs.
The situation now appears to have calmed down with both players returning to training on Tuesday and Emery says the pair have come into his thinking when considering his options for the visit of Burnley this weekend. “They are both good options, I will take the decision if they can be with us on Saturday, we will wait for tomorrow,” said Emery.
The Spaniard went on to say that the club were working with both men regarding their security in an effort to make sure they and their families feel safe – Kolasinac’s wife having reportedly fled to Germany amid fears for her well-being last weekend.
Emery is hopeful the situation will not prove a distraction if they both feature against Burnley, claiming he’s working hard to keep their minds on football. “We think their mentality is good and their focus is with us. My focus is to be positive and I want to help them to live with normality,” he added.
The return of Ozil and Kolasinac will be a welcome boost to Emery after he had to field a patched-up side for the clash at Newcastle.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s goal was enough to hand the visitors the win but it was a far from a vintage performance from the new-look Gunners.
Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock, who are both 19, were handed started against the Magpies and it remains to be seen whether they will keep their spots with Ozil, who is again being linked with a move away from the Emirates, set to return to action.
Club-record signing Nicolas Pepe could also come into contention with Emery revealing he will make a decision on Friday on whether he will start after he made his debut from the bench last weekend.
Meanwhile, Kolasinac could challenge Nacho Monreal for the left-back role, or prompt Emery to change formations and deploy wing-backs.
The Bosnia international was often used as a left wing-back last season and with new signing David Luiz also pushing for a start, Arsenal could revert to a 3-5-2 when Burnley come to town.