Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck has put back his return from injury until February which means he will be available for the Barcelona showdown.
The Arsenal striker had initially hoped to be back in action by January following a knee surgery at the start of this season but The Sun now reports Welbeck has been delayed by a series of setbacks. It is suggested that he could return to training in the first week of February.
If the reports are true, then he will be fit to play against Barcelona in the Champions League clash and this could be a major boost for the injury depleted Arsenal side. Not only Welbeck, as many as four players are returning ahead of the Barca clash – Alexis Sanchez, Tomas Rosicky, Jack Wilshere and Mikel Arteta.
If Coquelin becomes fit for the match, it would be a key boost for the Gunners. His return date is suggested as 26th February, which gives an option to recover early and feature in the first leg, but the second leg at the Nou Camp is much more realistic, which takes place on March 15.
However, there are no such hopes for Cazorla, who right now has no scheduled return date after undergoing a knee surgery earlier this month.
Last month Danny Welbeck said when talking about his progress. “It’s slow and steady but it’s coming along, it’s difficult to see the lads when you’re still in the gym, doing double days, but once I get back out on the pitch and start running I will be much happier.
“It’s a difficult period for me but I’m looking forward to coming back strong.”
However Welbeck, who netted eight goals in his debut season, right now facing a tough battle to win a berth in England’s Euro 2016 team because Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy have moved much ahead of injured Welbeck in Roy Hodgson’s plan and England boss also has warned he will not take any passengers to France next year.
Hodgson told: “We will be thinking about their ability to play a number of matches in a short space of time.
“What you are really asking is, ‘Are we going to take a player to a tournament because he’s talented but has not played virtually any football?
“It’s unlikely. I wouldn’t really be happy to take players with us in the hope they will become fully fit during the tournament. I’d rather have 23 players who are fit and ready to go and capable of playing from the very first minute.” The Three Lions boss is clearly not optimistic with those who have faced long-spell injury setback.