Friday 23 August 2019

Emery still unsure when Ozil and Kolasinac will be able to return

Emery: “We want to be with them as soon as possible and to have them ready to play.” Photo: Getty Images
Emery: “We want to be with them as soon as possible and to have them ready to play.” Photo: Getty Images

Jason Mellor

Unai Emery was unable to give a timescale on the likely absence of Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac after the pair missed Arsenal's 1-0 opening weekend win at Newcastle United.

A second-half goal from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang proved decisive as the visitors emerged victorious despite being unable to call on the influential duo, who were withdrawn from the squad for what the club described as 'further security incidents being investigated by the police' in the wake of the arrest of two men outside Ozil's home after an altercation with security staff.

Ferhat Ercan, of Highgate, and Salaman Ekinci, of Tottenham, were arrested and charged with a public order offence on Thursday 8 August following the incident in Camden. The two men, both 27, are due before the Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court on 6 September.

"The club is managing that situation," Emery said. "We want to be with them as soon as possible and to have them ready to play."

German midfielder Ozil, 30, and 26-year-old Bosnia and Herzegovina international Kolasinac were pulled out of the squad after it emerged they had again been targeted by criminals in the wake of an attempted carjacking last month.

Footage of the incident, which showed Kolasinac jumping out of Ozil's car and fighting off the two assailants, was widely shared within hours of the players reaching safety.

Both players were offered psychological support from Arsenal and were left out of the Lyon friendly because they were "not ready" to play, according to Emery.

Asked if they will be available for Saturday's visit by Burnley, the Spaniard added: "I don't know."

The Gunners then travel to Anfield to face Liverpool on August 24.

Arsenal's clean sheet at St James' Park matched their modest tally for the whole of last season away in the league, a fact which didn't go un-noticed by Emery, who added: "The win was more important, but the clean sheet is good for us." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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