Arsenal received a late injury boost ahead of their crucial Premier League clash against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday (8 November) after Laurent Koscielny overcame a fitness test to take part in training with the first-team. It will be welcome news to Arsene Wenger, who is already without several of his senior players due to various injury setbacks.
The French defender suffered a hip injury ahead of the game against Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Wednesday (4 November), and the Gunners boss had indicated that the French international will have a late fitness test ahead of the clash at the Emirates Stadium. The defender, who has been one of Arsenal's best players this campaign, seems to have cleared the test after he was pictured training with the first-team on Arsenal's official site.
The French defender will be key for Wenger for the visiting Mauricio Pochettino's team, as both sides are having strong runs in the Premier League. The Gunners are level on points with Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table, while Spurs are unbeaten in the league since their opening day loss at the hands of Manchester United.
The 12-time FA Cup champions are already without Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Aaron Ramsey, Danny Welbeck, Jack Wilshere and Tomas Rosicky due to injuries. The former three are expected after the upcoming international break, while the others are expected back in the New Year.
Meanwhile, Wenger is certain that they will face a very tough Tottenham team on Sunday, like they have every year. He also revealed the reason he loves the north London derby, a game that brings with it a lot of emotion and passion.
"They have been a threat every year since I've been here. In the last 20 years, they always had very strong teams. This year they are younger, they work very hard and they will be a tough opponent again - they are every year," Wenger said, as quoted on Arsenal's official site.
"I enjoy [the derby] because I believe that what you want in football is to play games that are important and where there is an excitement in the preparation, games that have meaning for everybody. Football can give special emotions to people and you want to be part of that."