Danny Welbeck
Danny Welbeck scored the winner for Arsenal against Manchester United in the FA Cup clash at Old TraffordGetty

Arsenal forward Danny Welbeck has not suffered a fresh setback and is on course to return to the first team after the new year despite reports emerging to the contrary. The 25-year-old has missed the entirety of this season through a knee injury he picked up in April and for which he has undergone surgery.

The Evening Standard reports that the player is set to return to action in January as planned despite reports claiming that he will be out until at least February, putting his participation in the 2016 European Championships in doubt. The Gunners, currently without seven of their first team players, have a host of injury problems to deal with and need everyone back in action soon in order to hoist a proper title challenge this season.

Welbeck's pace and ability to track back will give Arsene Wenger another option to choose from. This season, they have unearthed a real talent in Joel Campbell, who has been an important part of the Gunners line-up thus far. The Costa Rican has scored two important goals in the league and provided a beautiful assist against Olympiacos for Olivier Giroud's second goal that saw the Gunners through to the round of 16 stage of the tournament.

They are especially blighted in midfield, where they are missing five players, including the likes of Francis Coquelin, Santi Cazorla, Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere and Tomas Rosicky, bringing them down to their bare knees in terms of personnel. Wenger has, therefore, earmarked the January transfer window as one to add more quality in that region, having not signed a single outfield player last summer.

Arsenal play Manchester City in a top-of-the-table clash on 21 December, where the winner will take a significant lead over the other, putting in a proper marker for the title challenge. The Gunners went on top of the table for a brief period last weekend, but went back to second after Leicester City won their game in hand against a struggling Chelsea side.