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Arsenal head coach Unai Emery is hopeful that Nacho Monreal, Sead Kolasinac and Sokratis Papastathopoulos will return from injury to face Sporting CP on Thursday evening.
Eyebrows were raised ahead of Monday night’s win over Leicester City with right-back Stephan Lichtsteiner handed a rare start on the opposite flank with the club’s two left-backs absent.
Monreal withdrew from the squad against the Foxes with a tight hamstring, while Kolasinac also missed out following a small problem.
Sokratis was another absentee for the game after coming off in Greece’s UEFA Nations League defeat against Finland last week with an ankle injury.
While there is a chance to trio could return for the Europa League clash in Portugal on Thursday, the head coach has claimed he wants his players well rested ahead of a busy schedule for the team.
“Yesterday was a very bad day for our injuries because we lost two in the same position like Sead Kolasinac and Nacho Monreal,” Emery told the press after the Leicester win.
“They were in training with a small problem, but we did the group for today with both but this morning the news is they are not good to play.
“We had another player to help us like Lichtsteiner today and Xhaka – he played 30 minutes at left-back – but for us, for our balance it’s better Nacho or Sead are OK to play in this position and we are going to look at how they are for the next matches, but I hope they can play on Thursday or shortly afterwards
“Sokratis, he trained yesterday. I think he can stay for Thursday and we are going to look because now with a lot of matches in a few days it’s important the players get the good preparation.