Fraser Forster is on course to play for Southampton at Arsenal on Saturday despite withdrawing from the England squad due to injury.
The 28-year-old goalkeeper picked up an arm problem in the 1-1 draw against Sunderland at St Mary’s ahead of the international break and was forced to relinquish his place in Sam Allardyce’s first Three Lions squad for Sunday’s 1-0 World Cup qualifying win in Slovakia.
Saints team-mate Alex McCarthy was called up in Forster’s place but was a spectator on the bench as Joe Hart retained his place between the sticks.
However, any chance of the 26-year-old £2million summer signing from Crystal Palace making his debut for the Saints at the Emirates Stadium this weekend appears to have been dashed, as Forster is believed to be well on the road to fully recovering from his injury.
The news of Forster being on course to face the Gunners will be a big boost to Claude Puel as he targets a first win as Saints boss following two home draws against Watford and Sunderland, with a defeat at Manchester United sandwiched in between.