Arsenal v Cardiff: Emery faces tough choice, Warnock to make late decision

© John Walton/PA Wire

Arsenal boss Unai Emery faces a defensive conundrum for Tuesday’s Premier League clash with Cardiff, with Sokratis Papastathopoulos out for up to a month with an ankle problem and Laurent Koscielny likely to miss out.

Sokratis and fellow centre-back Koscielny were injured in last Friday’s 3-1 home defeat to Manchester United in the FA Cup, with the game expected to come too soon for the French defender – whose bruised jaw is being monitored daily.

Right-back Hector Bellerin, centre-back Rob Holding (both knee) and Danny Welbeck (ankle) are long-term absentees, while Henrikh Mkhitaryan (ankle) is back in training.

Provisional squad: Leno, Cech, Martinez, Jenkinson, Lichtsteiner, Mustafi, Mavropanos, Kolasinac, Monreal, Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Elneny, Torreira, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Iwobi, Ozil, Lacazette, Aubameyang, Nketiah.

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock admits he must wait to see which players are in the right frame of mind to play at Arsenal following the disappearance of the plane carrying their new striker Emiliano Sala.

Warnock says some players have been affected more than others following Sala’s disappearance over the English Channel last week, and he will take that into consideration before selecting his side to play at the Emirates Stadium.

Captain Sean Morrison is definitely out as recovers from an appendicitis operation.

Provisional squad: Etheridge, Smithies, Peltier, Bennett, Manga, Cunningham, Bamba, Arter, Ralls, Gunnarsson, Damour, Camarasa, Harris, Hoilett, Niasse, Paterson, Reid, Murphy, Mendez-Laing, Ward, Healey.

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