Mathieu Flamini was absent for our 2-0 win over Bournemouth this past Monday night, but Arsene Wenger believes he may be fit in time for our clash with Newcastle this weekend.
The Frenchman has been nursing an ankle injury for quite some time (via the Mirror), but has been needed in the absence of Francis Coquelin. Wenger opted not to risk him when we played host to the Cherries though, instead deploying Calum Chambers in midfield – who did a decent job filling in for his senior teammate.
Wenger claims Flamini may be fit for Newcastle’s trip to the Emirates though, so will have a decision to make about who to start.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) December 28, 2015
If there are still any doubts about Flamini’s fitness ahead of the weekend then Chambers will surely get the nod again, and his ageing teammate will at the most get spot on the bench.
Even if he is fully fit, there are no guarantees Flamini will be handed a starting spot. He’s obviously been handed an extended run in the team with no Coquelin to contend with, but it’s not like he’s indispensable. The 31-year-old is well past his best, and we’re all hoping to see a replacement arrive at the club in January. So would it really be the worst thing to continue testing Chambers in midfield?
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Injuries are once again threatening to derail our campaign, with some key players spending months and months on the sidelines this season. So regardless of how important a player Flamini is for us, it will be good to have him available as an option.
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