Arsene Wenger says Santi Cazorla is closing in on a return to full fitness for Arsenal.
Cazorla has been sidelined since November with a knee injury suffered against Norwich, with Arsenal’s Premier League form suffering in the Spaniard’s absence.
Arsenal have regressed from title contenders to a battle for Champions League qualification, with fifth-placed Manchester United five points behind with a game in hand.
Speaking ahead of the game against Norwich on Saturday, Wenger revealed that Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are close to returns.
“We have no big problems injury wise,” Wenger said. “There is not much time to go but the players are all available now so it looks good for the summer.
“Maybe, we have to decide that after the weekend,” Wenger replied when asked whether Cazorla could return in Arsenal next under-21s game – against Blackburn on May 3.
“Cazorla has practiced for two weeks with the team, Alex for one week so one of the two could be involved,” Wenger continued, speaking ahead of Arsenal’s weekend game against Norwich. “Santi has been out since November and Alex since Barcelona.
“It is good. Ideally the player injuries are accidental and it is good that at least they have hope to go to the Euros.”
Asked whether Cazorla’s absence has affected Arsenal, Wenger replied: “We have gone through a difficult spell but the quality of our game has come back in the last month and a half.
“We didn’t make the maximum from home games against lower table teams but we analyse that well and know it is not down to the quality of our game. He has been out since November. We are now in early May and it will take him a bit of time.”