Wenger ponders Sanchez ‘gamble’ ahead of Stoke trip
Alexis Sanchez has two days to convince Arsene Wenger to "gamble" on his fitness for the trip to Stoke.
Sanchez has not played since injuring a hamstring at Norwich on November 29 but is back in full training with the rest of the Arsenal squad.
And Wenger has admitted he is considering taking a punt on the forward’s fitness at a ground where the leaders have won just once previously in the Premier League.
"He has two decisive days," the Gunners boss said. "Today and tomorrow. He’s fit. Do we take a gamble or not on his injury?"
Wenger confirmed new signing Mohamed Elneny has completed the necessary paperwork and will be available for the first of two games Arsenal ‘Invincible’ Ray Parlour believes are key to his old side’s title chances.
"He’s a defensive midfielder who can contribute in an area that we are short," Wenger said. "He is a promising player. I expect him to develop with us into a very strong player. He can defend and attack. He’s available for Sunday."
Wenger has not ruled out making further signings this month, but with Sanchez now fit and Danny Welbeck nearing a return after nine months out the Frenchman sees no urgency for forward reinforcements.
"I would prefer to have the players back from injuries," he said. "Welbeck is two to three weeks away and I am confident I will not find a better player than Welbeck on the market."
Tomas Rosicky, Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin are all due back to play a part on the run-in, and Wenger said: "We are in a position where we can make our season a fantastic season. The injuries coming back will help."