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Arsenal ace a doubt to face Spurs in north London derby

Arsenal's Theo Walcott. Photo: Adam Davy/EMPICS Sport Arsenal's Theo Walcott. Photo: Adam Davy/EMPICS Sport

Friday, November 16, 2012
8:05 AM

Arsenal forward Theo Walcott faces a fitness test ahead of tomorrow’s Barclays Premier League clash with north-London rivals Tottenham at Emirates Stadium.

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The 23-year-old pulled out of the England squad for the midweek friendly in Sweden after suffering an injury to his buttock muscles in last week’s 3-3 draw against Fulham.

Arsenal will also assess goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, who could be back in the side for the first time since September after recovering from an ankle problem, while midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is another who will be monitored.

Manager Arsene Wenger said on the club’s official website, www.arsenal.com: “They all have a chance to be in the squad.

“Walcott came off against Fulham and will have a test, so will Szczesny.”

Wenger, though, revealed there were concerns over whether to throw Bacary Sagna into action once again following the France full-back’s return from a broken leg.

He added: “It is just for general fatigue. Sagna has played three games quickly, but before that he didn’t play for six months.”

Midfielder Jack Wilshere should come back into the side after he was suspended for the Fulham game, provided he shows no ill effects from his England appearance in Stockholm, where full-back Carl Jenkinson made his debut, also as a second-half substitute.

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Arsenal

Nickname: The Gunners.

Ground: Emirates Stadium (capacity 60,361).

Founded: 1886.

Honours: First Division (until 1992) and Premier League: 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1948, 1953, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2004.

FA Cup: 1930, 1936, 1950, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005.

League Cup: 1987, 1993.

Fairs Cup: 1970.

Cup Winners’ Cup: 1994.

Leading goalscorer: Thierry Henry, 228.

Leading appearances: David O’Leary, 722.