Even though Arsene Wenger felt the need to bring off Carl Jenkinson when Arsenal were losing to Southampton in the EFL cup on Wednesday night, the manager may be forced into starting him again for the Premier League away game at West Ham today.
I do not think he wants to and in a report on the Arsenal website the Frenchman revealed that he was hoping to play the Brazilian defender Gabriel today. Although Wenger did not mention what position he would play him I assume he means at right back as Koscielny and Mustafi are looking strong and settled in the middle.
The problem Wenger has and which he was planning to sort out one way or another yesterday, was about the frame of mind Gabriel will be in after the tragic plane crash involving the Brazilian football team Chapecoense, as the Arsenal defender had friends involved and was hit hard by the news.
Wenger said, “I think [he will be able to play. I will have a chat with him today [Friday].
“If he is in the right frame of mind, he will play. He sent a very emotional message to the families of people involved in this crash, but he still played on Wednesday night and I think if he has recovered well physically and mentally I will play him.”
If the boss is not sure how Gabriel will cope, especially with a minutes silence planned before the kick-off, he may have to go back to Jenkinson and that is also a risk as the lad is not in great form and his confidence will not be high after getting the hook in midweek.
Following on from the news that Debuchy will be out until well after the turn of the year, is the right back position becoming a big problem for Arsenal?