Wenger still has worries

Gibbs and Walcott ready, but Santos and Rosicky are doubts

Wenger: Injuries and suspensions have hit the Gunners hard this season

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Arsene Wenger will once again be without a number of senior stars when Arsenal play host to Swansea on Saturday.

Injuries and suspensions have hit the Gunners hard during the early stages of the 2011/12 campaign, with makeshift starting XIs having to be cobbled together.

Wenger will face another selection poser this weekend, as his side return to domestic action for the first time since their 8-2 humbling at the hands of Manchester United.

The international break has allowed some of his crocked stars to edge closer to full fitness, but the Frenchman will still be missing key players that form the spine of his side.

"We have (Abou) Diaby and (Jack) Wilshere (both ankle) out," Wenger told the club's official website.

"(Thomas) Vermaelen has had his surgery, which went well. So there are three players out there. The other one who may not be available is (Tomas) Rosicky, who came back with a kick on his knee. We'll see how he is tomorrow (Saturday) morning."

Wilshere remains a big miss for the Gunners, with the 19-year-old currently nursing an ankle problem.


On the midfielder's injury, Wenger said: "He has an inflamed bone. He will be one month in a boot and we'll see how he responds after that. We have got the best specialists in the world to assess his case because it is an unusual one.

"He said he felt it the first time for England against Switzerland, although he did suffer from a similar problem years ago. He thought it would go away but when he came back in pre-season it became slowly more painful again. It got to the stage at Emirates Cup where we had to stop him."

While Wilshere will be absent this weekend, his England international colleagues Kieran Gibbs and Theo Walcott could return to action.

Wenger said: "Kieran is back. Theo has been working hard and is fit. All the others players came back from international duty in good shape. Everyone else is available. Emmanuel Frimpong is back too (from suspension)."

Arsenal could hand debuts to a number of their deadline day recruits at the Emirates, but Brazilian full-back Andre Santos may have to wait a little longer for his Premier League bow.

Wenger said: "Santos is a bit short because he has not had competition since the Copa America. He is practicing well though.

"We also have Gervinho and (Alex) Song suspended but it is their last game out from the Newcastle match. (Carl) Jenkinson is suspended as well after two yellow cards at Manchester United. (Sebastien) Squillaci (calf) is not back yet."