Arsenal 'have the quality' without Ozil for title run-in says Wenger

Ozil Arsenal 2

Arsene Wenger believes that Arsenal can cope without Mesut Ozil for the remainder of the season.

Arsenal take on Tottenham Hotspur this weekend in the North London derby - and both teams come into the game on the back of disappointing weeks in continental competition.

The Gunners were dumped out of the Champions League by Bayern Munich on Tuesday night while on Thursday Benfica laid into Spurs at White Hart Lane - finishing 3-1 in the first leg of their Europa League tie.

So it is perhaps the perfect time for both teams to renew old rivalries, reacquaint and have a good go at each other.

But while Spurs have had some good injury news recently that has not necessarily been the case at Arsenal.

Jack Wilshere broke a bone in his foot on international duty, Aaron Ramsey’s recovery has been extended and if things couldn’t get any worse record signing Mesut Ozil suffered an injury against Bayern Munich in midweek.

It has now been confirmed that the German international suffered a strained hamstring after the second minute of action at the Allianz Arena - and could miss four to six weeks with the problem.

Arsenal also have worries over Nacho Monreal and Kieran Gibbs - while Yaya Sanogo and Kim Kallstrom have just recovered to full fitness.

Add to that the disciplinary problems of Nicklas Bendtner and long-term absentees Theo Walcott and Abou Diaby - not to mention rumours of a Tomas Rosicky groin strain and the injury news is bad.

Indeed the Gunners are at the top of PhysioRoom’s Injury Table.

But despite the absence of Ozil Arsene Wenger believes his squad has the depth and quality to do the job against Spurs without the £42.5 million signing from Real Madrid.

He stated in his presser this morning:

“It is of course a blow but I am confident we have the quality without him during that period. We have many creative players in our squad who can take over and produce quality performances. I am convinced that the team is ready, even without Ozil, to go for the challenge.”

Of course would many would argue the positive side of an Ozil injury is that it gives him a chance to genuinely rest - after a difficult run toward the end of the season.

And there are those who can come in his absence.

Lukas Podolski is chomping at the bit, Santi Cazorla would love to get further up the pitch and youngster Serge Gnabry will be dying for an opportunity.

So Arsenal may not be as potent - but they will still be very dangerous in this weekend’s North London derby.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch