Arsenal will not know until Saturday whether Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is fit for the Super Sunday game at Liverpool.
The England international has been unable to train this week after injuring his groin while playing in central midfield during last weekend's win over Newcastle.
Arsene Wenger admitted after that game he can ill-afford to lose Oxlade-Chamberlain given the ongoing absences of Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere and Mikel Arteta.
And the manager's Thursday fitness update on the club's website offered no assurances as he said: "We hope that Oxlade-Chamberlain will be fit. That’s what we’ll see on Saturday after a test. He’s not in training at the moment."
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Wenger's midfield resources are so stretched he replaced Oxlade-Chamberlain with 17-year-old debutant Ainsley Maitland-Niles against Newcastle, while Francis Coquelin has been recalled from a loan spell at Charlton and could now come into contention to start at Anfield.
Both Nacho Monreal and Theo Walcott have an outside chance of travelling to Liverpool, but Wenger describes the likelihood of Walcott featuring for the first time in 10 games as "very slight".
Tomas Rosicky, another midfield option, will not be ready until next week and remains out along with Laurent Koscielny and Mesut Ozil.
Meanwhile, in the Champions League round of 16 Arsenal have been paired with Monaco, the French club where Wenger made his name and the manager is looking forward to renewing old acquaintances.
"We had very few chances to get Monaco and I think it's a strange coincidence in life because I have spent 25 years of my life at Monaco and Arsenal together, so it's a little bit like my life meets my life," he said.
"Overall it is an opportunity for us to get through to the quarter-final. Having said that, Monaco is a tough draw because they have come top out of a very tough group and that means it is a signal for us to be ready to meet a tough team who defend very well and are very quick on counter-attacks. We need a good defensive performance against them."
Watch Liverpool v Arsenal live on Super Sunday on Sky Sports 1. Kick-off at Anfield is at 4pm.