Arsenal have received a massive injury boost in the form of right-back Carl Jenkinson’s return to full training. The 24-year-old had been missing in action ever since he suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury in January while playing for West Ham on a loan move.
It’s certainly good news for us as the right-back position is the only position in our team for which we didn’t have adequate backup options.
Hector Bellerin has his place nailed down in the starting eleven, but there is no obvious back-up option to him available in our squad. French defender Mathieu Debuchy is still with us, but it appears that he doesn’t feature in Arsene Wenger’s plans at all.
Debuchy expected to feature in our League Cup game against Nottingham Forrest, but Wenger opted to play youngster Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the game. It was kind of an unusual move as Maitland-Niles is not a natural right-back.
Now, there could be two possible explanations for Debuchy’s exclusion from the squad: either he is nursing an injury at the moment, or he’s really managed to piss off Wenger with his antics during the past season.
The current predicament with Debuchy makes Jenkinson’s return to full training even more crucial.
Jenkinson announced the news on his Twitter account with the tweet:
Back in full training tomorrow… Feel like a little kid on Christmas Eve
— Carl Jenkinson (@carljenkinson) September 25, 2016
Jenkinson, who has made one international appearance for England in 2012, joined us from Charlton Athletic in 2011. He spent three seasons with us before joining the Hammers in 2014 on a loan move.
He went on to impress for the Hammers and made 32 league appearances for them. His force with the Hammers led the West London club to renew his loan deal in 2015. He managed 20 league appearances for Slaven Bilic’s side last season before his season was cut short due to the cruciate injury.
Jenkinson could make his first start of the season in the League Cup fourth-round game against Reading City in the week of October 24. His return to full fitness means that now we have only two players ruled out with long-term injuries – Per Mertesacker and Danny Welbeck.
That’s quite an impressive list considering our struggles with injuries in the recent years.