When Arsenal take on Barcelona in the last 16 of the Champions League, Arsene Wenger and the players will know what to expect and we will have to be ready to do a whole lot of defensive work, both in the first leg at the Emirates stadium and the trip to the Nou Camp in Spain a couple of weeks later.
So it will obviously be a big boost for us to have our best players fit and ready to face the current Champions League holders and that certainly includes the French defensive midfielder Francis Coquelin. It was always going to be touch and go whether Le Coq was going to be back in time for the Champions League games, especially the first leg but at least the draw has done Arsenal a favour in that sense.
Having been handed the toughest possible opponents, but the way the fixtures have fallen is that Arsenal v Barcelona is not one of the four ties to be played in the first week. Instead the Spanish champions come to London on February 23rd.
With the sports injury website physioroom.com having February down as Coquelin’s return date, that extra week could be crucial to our hopes of pulling off a shock and knocking the holders out.