Arsene Wenger opnes up on three injury worries ahead of Atletico Madrid clash
Arsene Wenger is sweating over the fitness of Henrikh Mkhitaryan, David Ospina and Alex Iwobi ahead of Arsenal’s trip to Atletico Madrid.
All three players picked up knocks in Sunday’s defeat to Manchester United, with goalscorer Mkhitaryan substituted off after feeling pain in his knee.
Goalkeeper Ospina, who started the Europa League semi-final first leg clash last week, injured his rib shortly before Marouane Fellaini scored an injury-time winner at Old Trafford.
Nigeria international Iwobi is also a doubt for Thursday’s clash in Madrid due to a hamstring problem.
Speaking after Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat to Jose Mourinho’s side, Wenger said: ‘Mkhitatryan had a little knock on his knee. Ospina has a rib problem and Iwobi has a hamstring problem.
Asked whether they were all ruled out for Thursday, Wenger added: ‘At the moment, no. We will have to monitor them.’
Wenger admitted that losing to United – and picking up injuries – was a far from ideal outcome with a Europa League final at stake this week.
But the Frenchman was pleased with the performance of a number of his fringe players, with Calum Chambers, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Ainsley Maitland-Niles impressing for the Gunners.
‘Maitland-Niles is slowly getting to be the player I think he can be,’ Wenger, who will leave the Emirates at the end of the season, said.
‘He creates as well. Mavropanos in training has shown top quality. Can he show that in a big game? You never know. I think he did. He surprised everyone by his quality today.’