Arsenal are sweating on the fitness of captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ahead of their Boxing Day Premier League clash with London rivals Chelsea.
The forward has missed the last two games with a calf injury and boss Mikel Arteta will be keen to have him back as the Gunners look to address their poor run of form, which has landed them 15th in the table having gone seven league games without a win since beating Manchester United 1-0 at Old Trafford on November 1.
‘Auba is working hard with our medical team in order to regain full fitness as soon as possible,’ Arsenal’s update read.
‘[He] has now joined outside drills and will continue to be assessed regarding availability ahead of Saturday.’
Thomas Partey (thigh) will miss out again after sustaining the injury in the 2-0 defeat to Tottenham earlier this month, with the Gunners’ official website stating: ‘Thomas is currently unavailable, but is progressing well to now working outside on close ball work, together with the continued focus on his overall fitness rehabilitation.’
Fellow midfielder Granit Xhaka is available having served a three-match ban and Gabriel Martinelli is likely to be fit after limping off against Manchester City on Tuesday.
Chelsea will hand late fitness tests to full-backs Ben Chilwell and Reece James ahead of the Emirates Stadium encounter.
Chilwell has an ankle issue and James a knee problem, and the England stars could miss both the Arsenal clash and Monday’s Stamford Bridge meeting with Aston Villa.
Hakim Ziyech is also still sidelined with a hamstring injury, but is closing in on a return to action.
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