Arsenal’s situation against AC Milan has gone from bad to worse. Not only do they have to overcome a huge 4-0 deficit, but their squad has been absolutely decimated with injuries, leaving only Alex Song the natural midfielder in the first team squad with Rosicky becoming a doubt along with Benayoun, Diaby and Arteta all ruled out.
Arsène Wenger revealed the following team news on Arsenal’s official website ahead of the AC Milan game:
on injuries from the Liverpool game:
We have paid a big cost because we have lost Benayoun (sickness), Diaby (hamstring) and Arteta (head). Arteta has no major problem but he has to rest for a week so he will be available against Newcastle but not Milan.”
on other doubts:
We have a few other knocks like Kieran Gibbs (groin and calf) and Rosicky (groin) is doubtful for Tuesday too. We will see. We will put out the best possible team for us to qualify.
on whether Van Persie will start
Yes. I would not be very credible telling you we want to score five goals and then I leave Robin van Persie out!
The biggest losses will have to be Gibbs and Rosicky as there isn’t another attacking midfielder with Ramsey out or another natural leftback. Wenger is quite likely to shift Sagna to the left with Jenkinson slotting in at right back, which will enable Vermaelen to stay at centre back.
So what are the options for midfield now that Arteta, Diaby, Benayoun, Ramsey, Wilshere and now possibly Rosicky is injured? Surely Wenger will shift to a more attacking 4-4-2 with Song and Oxlade-Chamberlain in the centre of the park as there simply isn’t any more centre-mids. Coquelin and Frimpong are injured too, and now that Arshavin has left the midfield options are looking extremely sparse.