Double boost for Gunners
Arsenal could be boosted by the return of Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianski against Birmingham.
Last Updated: 15/10/09 5:18pm
Arsenal could be boosted by the return of goalkeeping duo Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianski for this weekend's clash with Birmingham.
Fabianski, who has yet to feature this season, has recovered from knee surgery, while Almunia is rated 50/50 to make a comeback after a month out with a chest infection.
The return of the duo could mean disappointment for third-choice keeper Vito Mannone who has impressed in the absence of Almunia and Fabianski.
Gunners captain Cesc Fabregas is set to play despite missing Spain's midweek victory over Bosnia-Herzegovina because of personal reasons, but Eduardo is again ruled out with a thigh problem.
Gael Clichy and Abou Diaby are both doubtful for the visit of Birmingham after sustaining ankle injuries on international duty with France.
However, fellow Frenchman Sami Nasri is close to a return from his broken leg with Arsene Wenger pencilling him in for the Carling Cup clash with Liverpool on 28th October.
"Clichy got a little knock on his ankle and Diaby was kept out of the French squad last night because of an ankle problem as well. But we believe the problem to Diaby should be very minor," Wenger told the club's official website.
"Eduardo is not available, he is too far away. Almunia could be available for the game. It is 50/50.
"Fabianski is available and will be in the squad for the weekend. As for [Samir] Nasri (broken leg), I believe he could be back in the group for the Liverpool game. If all goes well he could be in the team."
Home comfortsMeanwhile, Wenger believes his side's home form will be vital to their chances of fighting for the title this season.
Arsenal have a 100 per cent record at home this term and Wenger is keen to keep that going as they look to be up contesting for honours at the end of the campaign.
"We know that our season will be decided at home," added Wenger.
"We have the ability to win anywhere, but how well we deal with opponents like Blackburn will decide things.
"We need to keep our focus high and approach each game with the same desire."