Which injured player is most crucial to return for Arsenal?

Arsenal are enjoying a more than decent start to the season which is made better by the fact so many key players are missing through injury.

Arsene Wenger has already commented this season on the number of high profile injuries his side has, but he’s found a system that works and the current team are producing results.

The Gunners are only going to get better as each player returns from the treatment room but which star’s return is most vital to the club?

Tomas Rosicky

Rosicky started the season in the side and he was playing superbly before he picked up a thigh injury while on international duty with the Czech Republic.

He takes care of two positions; he can play centrally and he can also play down the left side of midfield. Considering that left midfield slot is a real problem for Arsenal, his return there would be most welcome.

Abou Diaby

Diaby has been out of action since last season with a knee problem and there have been times when the side has missed his presence in the middle.

However, the centre of midfield is one of Arsenal’s strengths at the moment and Mathieu Flamini has returned to the club, doing a superb job in terms of chasing around, winning back possession before passing onto the more creative players.

Mikel Arteta

The Spaniard is a loss to the Gunners because of his leadership and his experience.

There are players in the squad who easily compensate for what he offers in terms of his playing style, but there are going to be times when his leadership and authority in the side is missed, as he can do a very effective job dragging the side through poor performances and difficult matches.

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Lukas Podolski

Podolski is arguably the biggest miss for the club because of how effective he can be in different positions.

With everyone fit, the left side of the attack is his and he’s undoubted in that role. The fact the club doesn’t have a cast iron replacement for Olivier Giroud up front makes it even more important for the German to get over his hamstring problem.

Fortunately for Arsenal, he is due for a return in or around the busy winter schedule.

Santi Cazorla

Cazorla is a miss because of how effective and creative he has been since he joined the club.

However, the recent arrival of Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid means the side have retained that creativity and precision in the opponent’s final third. Arsenal are a better side with him in the starting eleven but the point is they can easily cope until he recovers from an ankle problem.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

The Ox’s return is most significant right now because of his ability to play out wide for the club.

He is due to return in the middle of the winter schedule and he’s a miss because of the damage he can do as an impact player. However, he’s not going to get into the side ahead of Podolski, which makes the return of the German more significant for the Gunners.

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What do you think? Who are the Gunners missing most?

image: © sdhansay

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