Arsenal expected to be without four key players for FA Cup third round tie at Blackpool

Petr Cech is likely to start in goal for the Gunners
Petr Cech is likely to start in goal for the Gunners
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Arsenal are expected to be without a string of key players for tomorrow’s FA Cup third round clash against Blackpool.

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Gunners boss Unai Emery has confirmed four key players - Mesut Ozil, Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal and Shkodran Mustafi - were all too unfit to take part in training on Thursday.

Ozil has sat out the previous two games against Liverpool and Fulham respectively due to a knee injury.

Right back Bellerin, meanwhile, has been nursing a calf injury since the defeat to Southampton last month and he’s also thought to be a major doubt.

Monreal continues to recover from an ongoing hamstring injury while defensive partner Mustafi has also been struggling to overcome a hamstring issue of his own, having been forced off at half time in each of Arsenal’s last two games.

The Premier League giants are also without the likes of long-term absentees Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Rob Holding and Danny Welbeck – who’re unlikely to play again this season.

There was some positive news for Arsenal as Dinos Mavropanos has returned to full training after a lengthy groin injury while Emile Smith Rowe is also close to returning from a hip injury.

With so many injury concerns, Emery will struggle to rotate as much as he perhaps would have liked this weekend but the likes of Petr Cech, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Carl Jenkinson, Mo Elneny and Aaron Ramsey should all feature.

Possible line-up (4-3-3): Cech, Lichtsteiner, Papastathopoulos, Jenkinson, Maitland-Niles, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Elneny, Iwobi, Lacazette, Aubameyang