Theo Walcott
Theo Walcott is set for his Arsenal return Reuters

Theo Walcott has returned to full first-team training with Arsenal after missing the last nine months with a knee ligament injury.

Pictures released through Arsenal's official website show the 25-year-old taking part in the training session on Monday 13 October, suggesting he is in contention to make his long-awaited return against Hull City on Saturday 18 October.

Walcott was taken off on a stretcher in January during the 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur in an FA Cup tie, with the injury also ruling him out of England's World Cup campaign in Brazil.

In a further boost to manager Arsene Wenger's plans, Walcott was joined in training by fellow winger Serge Gnabry, who has been plagued by a knee problem for the last six months.

Walcott's return comes as a timely boost for Wenger, who will be without Mesut Ozil for the next 12 weeks after the German FA confirmed the playmaker had suffered a partial ligament tear in his left knee.

The Gunners have been beset by injury problems during the opening months of the Premier League campaign with Olivier Giroud another long-term absentee.

However, Wenger has eased concerns over the Frenchman's condition, insisting the striker is ahead of schedule in his bid to return to the first team.

"Olivier Giroud is recovering very well. I believe he is ahead of schedule in terms of rehabilitation. The operation went perfectly," Wenger told beIN Sports.

Danny Welbeck has led the Arsenal line in Giroud's absence this season but the former Manchester United star provided his manager with a fresh scare after he limped out of England's 1-0 win over Estonia on Sunday 12 October.

England manager Roy Hodgson eased Wenger's concerns, though, insisting the 23-year-old's knock was nothing serious.

"Unfortunately Danny turned his ankle slightly, but he should be fit," Hodgson told ITV Sport following his side's narrow win in Tallinn.