Arsenal’s vice captain Per Mertesacker is fit after partaking in full training over the past two days ahead of the Gunners blockbuster clash with Chelsea today.
The towering German international suffered an ankle injury in the 2-1 extra-time FA Cup Semi-final victory over Reading last Saturday and was consequently substituted for Gabriel. The Brazilian filled in superbly and helped the Gunners battle for their second Cup final in 12 months.
Many are expecting the former Villarreal star defender to start alongside Laurent Koscielny, but two photographs published from Arsenal’s club photographer suggests Mertesacker has been fit enough to partake in two successive training sessions ahead of Cesc Fabregas’ return to his former stomping ground.
Arsenal published a series of photographs on their official website, here’s one straight from the training ground:
Interestingly, club photographer Stuart MacFarlane tweeted this on Friday with Mertesacker part of the pack:
— Stuart MacFarlane (@Stuart_PhotoAFC) April 25, 2015
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So there’s certainly plenty of evidence Mertesacker is fit, but will he lineup against Chelsea? The experienced German has been one of Arsenal’s most consistent performers recently and has played in six of our eight successive wins in the League. Although he may not have the pace and aggression of Gabriel, the former Werder Bremen centre back has a strong partnership and understanding with Koscielny – so for this reason alone it seems highly likely Wenger will go for the proven duo.
Do you agree Gooners? Or do you think we will benefit from the pace and athleticism of Gabriel at the back to combat Chelsea’s fluent and quick front line?