Unai Emery has given an update on Kieran Tierney and Alexandre Lacazette ahead of Arsenal’s trip to Bramall Lane to face Sheffield United on Monday night.
Tierney is yet to make an appearance in the Premier League for Arsenal after only recently overcoming a niggling groin injury that he was carrying when he made a £25m move from Celtic in the summer.
The left-back impressed on his debut against Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup and was once again excellent during the Europa League victory over Standard Liege before the international break.
Emery has now said Tierney is ready to start in the league but the Arsenal boss stopped short of confirming whether the Scottish international would line-up against Sheffield United as he faces competition from Sead Kolasinac.
Meanwhile, Lacazette hasn’t featured for Arsenal since aggravating a troublesome ankle injury during the North London Derby draw with Tottenham at the Emirates Stadium on September 1st.
The striker has missed our last seven matches but is back in full training and should return to the squad on Monday night. Emery says Lacazette will be assessed over the coming days but it sounds like he’ll be on the bench at least against Sheffield United.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference today, Emery told Arsenal.com:
“Today is Lacazette’s first training back with us. He finished it well and he’s feeling well with his injuries. Tomorrow we will be training again and he will be with us. We will decide.
“The most important thing is that first he is training, then secondly it’s whether he can be with us and it depends how he can feel in the next days training with us, whether his ankle is not giving him any more problems.
“It’s positive for us that he’s started training and that he’s a possibility for Monday. I don’t know whether he’s ready for 90 minutes or on the bench. We’ll decide that over the next days, but it’s very important for him to come back to training with us.
“[Tierney is] ready to play. Now we have two options in that left-back role with Sead Kolasinac and him. We’re going to play a lot of matches after Monday. We will need every player.
“It depends how he comes into the first training with us, Sead, after his international matches. We now have two players in that position and we can use one on Monday, it depends how they are, one or the other.”
I know Emery needs to rotate his squad and keep players fresh but there is no doubt Tierney should be Arsenal’s first choice left-back in the Premier League so I hope we see him make his debut on Monday.
It’s also a big boost to have Lacazette back in contention as he’ll be another top class option in attack. It will be interesting to see how Emery integrates him back into the team as one of Bukayo Saka or Nicolas Pepe will have to make way.