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Arsenal handed triple injury boost for North London derby?

Arsenal handed triple injury boost for North London derby?

Arsenal are reportedly hopeful that Martin Odegaard, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Reiss Nelson will all be fit for October’s North London derby against Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates Stadium.

Odegaard and Zinchenko were both absent from the 3-0 win over Brentford last weekend after picking up knocks, with the former sustaining a calf injury in training.

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian FA revealed that Zinchenko had also been suffering from an issue in the same area, and the left-back would not be available for the international period as a result.

Norway manager Stale Solbakken provided an update on Odegaard’s condition earlier this week, during which he admitted that the 23-year-old was “not doing well”.

“We are in regular dialogue with him and (Mikel) Arteta and Arsenal’s health sector, as it is called in Danish. Nothing has been decided there, so there is still hope,” Solbakken told TV2.

Oleksandr Zinchenko in action for Arsenal on August 20, 2022© Reuters

“They are the ones who have had ‘hands on him’ up until now, and they are in dialogue. He’s not doing well now. Now it’s a matter of getting a final decision on whether he can be in both or one game. We’ll certainly see him in Norway, either as a player or a ‘fourth coach’. It means a lot to have him.”

However, Goal reports that Odegaard and Zinchenko’s injuries are relatively minor, and both men could be back for the visit of Antonio Conte‘s side after the international break.

Odegaard was not called up to the Norway squad for September’s games with Slovenia and Serbia in the UEFA Nations League, but the report adds that he could still report for international duty if his issue heals up quickly.

The Gunners captain is understood to have been playing through the pain of a calf injury for a number of weeks, and he was present in the team’s final training session ahead of the win over Brentford before the decision was made to take him out.

With Odegaard absent, Fabio Vieira made his full Premier League debut at the Brentford Community Stadium and scored the Gunners’ third goal on the day with an impressive long-range strike.

Reiss Nelson in action for Arsenal in July 2022© Reuters

As well as Odegaard and Zinchenko, Nelson is also expected to make his return to action in the North London derby after picking up a serious thigh injury in August.

The English attacker is yet to make a competitive appearance for the Gunners this term, but he was spotted back in training with his teammates last week and should be at Mikel Arteta‘s disposal on October 1.

Cedric Soares could also make himself available as he bids to recover from a knock, but Emile Smith Rowe is more of a doubt after suffering a recurrence of a groin injury earlier this month.

Mohamed Elneny, meanwhile, is expected to remain out until 2023 with his serious hamstring injury, but Thomas Partey made his return to the starting lineup against Brentford.

Arsenal remain top of the Premier League table after seven games and can open up a four-point gap over third-placed Tottenham with victory on October 1.

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