LONDON (Sporting Alert) — Arsenal will wait to give Alexis Sanchez every chance of playing in Saturday’s English Premier League London derby against Tottenham at White Hart Lane.
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Sanchez remains doubtful for the matchup because of a hamstring injury, but manager Arsene Wenger has not completely ruled out the forward.
The Chile international has scored 12 goals in the English Premier League so far for the Gunners, while contributing seven assists and he is determined to play in the North London battle.
“Alexis wants to have a go,” Wenger said at Friday’s press conference. “He wants to play, of course, he is very keen.
“He feels he can defy the medical people because he is so keen to play that he thinks he can get over strains.”
Wenger, although hoping that Sanchez will be fit to play, believes his team has enough quality to cover for the club’s leading goalscorer.
“We have enough offensive options, we are not short,” the manager revealed. “I think we have enough offensive power.
“If all of us perform individually and collectively, we can get above not playing Sanchez.”
Meanwhile, England forward Danny Welbeck is set to make a return to first team action after being ruled out for over a month with a thigh muscle injury.
But Arsenal will continue to be without midfielders Jack Wilshere and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who both continue to recover from respective injuries.
Tottenham coach Mauricio Pochettino welcomes back the services of Algerian midfielder Nabil Bentaleb, who is available for Saturday’s clash after he returned from the Africa Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea.
In fact, the boss revealed that he has a fully-fit squad for the Arsenal matchup.
“All the players are available and this is a very good thing for us,” said Pochettino on the club’s official website.
“It’s difficult for me to now pick the 18 players, but it’s better to have that competition.
“It’s important for all the team to be fit and available for Saturday.”
A win for Arsenal on Saturday will see them moving up to third in the Premier League table standings on 45 points, while a victory for Tottenham will see them replacing Southampton at fourth place.
Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane are the main standouts for Tottenham this season, while the return of Mesut Ozil from injury has given Arsenal a new spark.
Tottenham enters the contest smarting a six game unbeaten Premier League home record after winning four and drawing two at White Hart Lane.
Arsenal, in the meantime, is on a five-match winning streak in all competitions and is coming off a one-sided 5-0 victory over Aston Villa in the last outing.