Paris St-Germain v Arsenal

12 Sep

Laurent Koscielny


Laurent Koscielny scored an overhead kick against Southampton on Saturday

Laurent Koscielny should be fit to face Paris St-Germain in Arsenal’s opening Champions League group game on Tuesday.

The defender, who suffered a facial injury in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Southampton, trained on Monday.

New signing Shkodran Mustafi should partner Koscielny, with Arsenal already without their other centre-backs Per Mertesacker and Gabriel because of injury.

Striker Olivier Giroud is pushing for his first start of the season in Paris.

The France international, 29, has made two substitute appearances for the Gunners so far this campaign.

It was a foul on the forward that led to Arsenal’s late winner in Saturday’s home win after Koscielny’s overhead kick had cancelled out Petr Cech’s own goal.

Midfielder Aaron Ramsey, who trained separately from the rest of the squad on Monday, will not travel to the French capital because of concerns over a hamstring problem.

Unai Emery<!–

Unai Emery succeeded Laurent Blanc as PSG manager this summer

After a poor start to the season, which saw them lose their opening game to Liverpool and then draw with Leicester, Arsenal have won two successive games.

In contrast, PSG won their first two Ligue 1 matches, but have since lost to Monaco before drawing 1-1 with Saint Etienne on Friday.

The French champions have undergone many changes during the summer, chief of which saw Unai Emery take over as manager and talismanic striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic leave to join Manchester United.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger believes Ibrahimovic represents a significant loss to the French side.

“They will be continue to be the dominant team in France but they lost more than a player with Ibrahimovic,” Wenger told Arsenal Player.

“He was the leader, the captain, a charismatic carrier of the ambition of the club and it’s always difficult to measure, when you lose a player of that stature, how big the damage is.

“At the moment they have also changed managers so they are trying to find their feet at the moment.”

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