Arsene Wenger has provided an update on the fitness of Danny Welbeck, revealing that the Arsenal striker will not play in the Emirates Cup this weekend having not yet returned to full training in the aftermath of a problematic knee injury.
The England international appeared to suffer the problem during the narrow FA Cup semi-final victory over Reading at Wembley on 18 April, featuring just once more for the Gunners after that as a 76th-minute replacement for Francis Coquelin during the goalless draw against Chelsea.
As well as missing the cup final against Aston Villa that saw Arsenal triumph in the competition for the second year in succession, Welbeck also missed the club's final five Premier League matches as well as England's fixtures in the Republic of Ireland and Slovenia in June.
Welbeck's knee issue was initially expected to clear up in just a matter of days, but after a prolonged absence he was still not deemed fit enough to be included in the squad that last week beat Everton to claim the Barclays Asia Trophy in Singapore.
Wenger conceded earlier in July that the minor injury had taken "much longer" to settle than first thought, but confirmed that he would be ready to feature during the annual Emirates Cup tournament beginning 25 July.
That no longer seems to be the case, however, with the Arsenal boss now claiming that he is unlikely to be available for up to three weeks and is therefore almost certain to miss the Community Shield clash with Chelsea on 2 August, as well as the top-flight season opener against West Ham seven days later.
Star forward Alexis Sanchez has already been ruled out of those aforementioned matches having been granted a summer break in the aftermath of Chile winning their first ever Copa America title on home soil.
"No," Wenger was quoted as saying by the club's official website when asked if Welbeck will feature against Lyon and Wolfsburg in North London.
"Welbeck has not completely recovered, he is not in full training and Alexis comes back on 3 August. Ospina comes back on Monday, and Alexis one week later.
"Welbeck is supposed to start to go outside and run again this weekend and if that is positive in the next three weeks he will be available. He will be short for the start of the season in two weeks, but three weeks should be all right."
Wenger further revealed that he has no new injury concerns following the visit to south east Asia, although a decision on the involvement of battling midfielder Mathieu Flamini will be taken at the last minute and Wojciech Szczesny's inclusion is likely to depend on the outcome of talks over a potential loan switch to Roma in Serie A.
He added: "We have everybody available who came from Asia. We have no injuries. Flamini has a little bit of a knock on his ankle but I will decide if I involve him or not over the weekend. Szczesny might not be involved because he might move to Roma as you have seen. Apart from that I hope I can give 90 minutes to every player."
Flamini, who arrived for a second spell at the Emirates Stadium in 2013 following a five-year stint with AC Milan, featured for 64 minutes of the 4-0 win over a Singapore Select XI but did not play against Everton.
There is cause to doubt that he will remain an Arsenal player for much longer, with the London Evening Standard citing numerous Turkish sources claiming that he is set to follow former teammate Lukas Podolski to Super Lig champions Galatasaray in a deal worth £2.8m ($4.3m).