Arsene Wenger believes Abou Diaby can play a part in the final stages of the season after declaring his compatriot is fit and available for selection.
The French midfielder hasn’t played a game since March 16, 2013, suffering a serious knee injury that ruled him out for over a year. Many haven’t even thought about the prospect of Diaby playing a part this campaign however he has come through 45 minutes of tonight’s under-21 clash against Chelsea at Emirates Stadium, and he could be in line for a return to the squad.
His contract is set to expire at the end of next season, so to have him back and around the squad is a boost to allow him a full pre-season.
Wenger told Arsenal Player:
He is back in full training now and available to play. He might play a part of the game for the under-21s.
Yes of course [he could play for the first team this season], it depends how well he comes out of the game. He hasn’t played for a year but physically he is ready to play, completely. It is now just decision-making, getting used to challenges again. He needs a game.
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Everybody [counted him out] but he is fit and ready.
Diaby has proven his ability in the past but after continual injury problems his Gunners career has yet to really kick start. Last campaign was extremely promising, becoming an integral member of Arsenal and Frances midfield early on before two separate setbacks rendered him unavailable. Now that he’s returned to fitness lets hope he can undergo a prolonged period of time without any further injury woes.
That said, it’s difficult to see Diaby playing this season with the depth we have in midfield… But welcome back!!