Arsenal are hopeful that Shkodran Mustafi will be fit enough to rejoin the back line for their crucial Carabao Cup quarter final against Tottenham on Wednesday.
Unai Emery has been missing a few key players in defensive positions recently, but the potential return of German centre-half Mustafi along with other first team stars will provide his side with a timely boost.
Realising there's another north London derby in less than 1️⃣2️⃣ hours 😅— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) December 19, 2018
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Both Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos were suspended for the 3-2 defeat at Southampton that ended Arsenal's 22-match unbeaten run, and the former will now be hoping to overcome a tight hamstring before Wednesday's kick off.
In the game against the Saints, Emery was forced to play a makeshift back four with Granit Xhaka at centre back, alongside Stephan Lichtsteiner and previous long-term absentees Laurent Koscielny and Nacho Monreal.
With Rob Holding out for the remainder of the season since suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury against Manchester United, it may be that Emery will have to find a balance between players with slight injuries and players just returning from long-term lay offs.
This is the second time Arsenal have faced Tottenham in December, following their exhilarating 4-2 victory at the Emirates earlier in the month.
Whoever leaves the Emirates victorious will join Tuesday's winners Burton Albion and reigning Carabao Cup holders Manchester City in the pot for the semi final draw.