Arsenal have been handed a major injury blow ahead of their Carabao Cup final against Manchester City with Aaron Ramsey expected to miss the game due to a groin injury.

The Welsh midfielder has been a regular for the Gunners in the Premier League this season and has formed a strong partnership with Granit Xhaka at the heart of Arsenal's midfield.

Apart from his six-game absence at the end of last year due to a hamstring injury, he has been Arsene Wenger's first choice in midfield. However, he has missed Arsenal's last two games, one in the league and the other being the Europa League last-32 first-leg against Ostersunds with a groin injury, and the manager was hopeful that he would return for the Carabao Cup final.

According to The Sun, Ramsey has failed to recover from the injury he sustained in training ahead of the north London derby against Tottenham Hotspur on 2 February. The midfielder's progress is not going as per plan, which will see him miss out on the trip to Wembley on Sunday, 25 February.

Ramsey's absence will be a major blow as the midfielder seemed to be finding his best form after returning from his hamstring injury at the start of the year. He scored his first-ever hat-trick in the game against Everton, which took place a week before their clash against Mauricio Pochettino's side.

Jack Wilshere is likely to deputise for the Wales international alongside Xhaka, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Mesut Ozil and Alex Iwobi taking up the positions ahead of them. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is expected to lead the line and Eddie Nketiah will provide backup as Alexandre Lacazette is out for at least six weeks with a knee injury.

Meanwhile, Petr Cech believes that David Ospina will start the final in goal after playing there in all the Carabao Cup games leading up to the clash at Wembley. The Czezh Republic stopper remains first choice for the Gunners, but the Colombian has been preferred in the European and domestic cup competitions.

The former Chelsea goalkeeper, who won three League Cups during his time at Stamford Bridge, admits that sitting on the bench is part and parcel of the game despite the players wanting to play every single match.

"At the start, it was clear that it was going to be like that," Cech said when asked about Ospina starting ahead of him against City, as quoted by Sky Sports.

"I will be there with the team supporting but I don't expect to play. It is always hard to watch any game from the bench or even from the stand if you are not selected.

"As a player, you always want to be involved. But, obviously, you are in a professional club where there are 25 top players and the manager always makes his choices for the game and you need to accept that," the former Blues stopper added.

Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey will not be available for Arsenal's Carabao Cup final against Manchester City Getty