Wenger: Gunners in rude health
Arsene Wenger believes Arsenal are in unusually rude health for this time of year.
Things are looking up for the Gunners on the injury front after what was a difficult start to the campaign. The likes of Jack Wilshere, Bacary Sagna and Wojciech Szczesny have all returned, while Wenger has revealed Abou Diaby and Andre Santos will be back soon, meaning only goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski would be absent through injury.
"It is unusual, especially at this period of the season," Gunners manager Wenger told the club's official website, arsenal.com. "It is down to the continuing good work we are doing behind the scenes at the club. We hope that it continues because it is important to go into January with a full squad and we will be losing Gervinho to the Africa Cup of Nations."
Wenger is also boosted by news that Olivier Giroud and Tomas Rosicky are available to face Newcastle this weekend after missing the 1-0 win at Wigan through illness. The Frenchman said: "We should not have any new injuries from our last game. Giroud and Rosicky should be available again. They were sick at Wigan."
Rosicky's return has been welcomed by team-mate Santi Cazorla. The 28-year-old has impressed since his summer arrival from Malaga and is looking forward to building up an understanding with the Czech midfielder.
"I think that Rosicky is an amazing player, now I have started playing with him because he too has been through a long injury, and he is also a 'Spanish' type of player," Cazorla said.
"He associates himself very well, and seeing the positions that we play in, we will understand each other very well, as we do every day during training, and I hope to enjoy many good moments with him on the pitch."
Cazorla is hoping he can build up a rapport with Rosicky similar to that already achieved with Jack Wilshere and Mikel Arteta.
"Every day that goes by we understand each other better," he added. "It is very easy for me to play with them. Mikel is more of a tactical player, a very important player in any side. He always has to be well positioned, to cover the open spaces that we leave further up the field.
"And Jack is an amazing football player. I did not know him well because when I arrived he was injured, but every day that goes by I understand why he is so well rated here, and especially for what he brings to the team."