Arsenal's Danny Welbeck suffers leg injury against Sporting

Unai Emery will be without five players to take on Sporting Lisbon with

Unai Emery will be without five players to take on Sporting Lisbon with

Unai Emery has made wholesale changes to the side that drew against Liverpool as Arsenal prepare to take on Sporting Lisbon in a UEFA Europa League tie.

"It is a very important match because they are second in the table and if we win, we are first in the group". They are now placed fifth in the English top-flight with 23 points from 11 games.

There are five men that he is still not able to call upon however, with defensive quartet Sokratis, Nacho Monreal, Laurent Koscielny and Konstantinos Mavropanos all missing the game.

Hector Bellerin has had troubles in recent weeks with regards to his fitness. He will feature alongside Rob Holding in central defence, who has caught a lot of attention in recent weeks with his impressive performance.

"His injury was with the mentality of the players".

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The home side started positively enough with Matteo Guendouzi getting in behind the visitors backline to send a low ball in, but Welbeck's flick was hacked off the line. He will be keen to impress following a rather disappointing couple of weeks for the Welshman.

The potential absence of Welbeck leaves Arsenal short of options in the attacking third of the pitch as Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remain the only genuine forwards in the squad, although it remains to be seen whether the Gunners hierarchy hand manager Unai Emery funds to sign new players during the January transfer window. The Gabonese worldwide has already notched up two goals in the competition so far and will be eager to extend his scoring tally.

Welbeck landed awkwardly after leaping in the air to meet a cross just after the half hour mark against Sporting, and needed oxgyen before being stretchered off the pitch.

As the Lithuanian referee Ged Mazelka blew for half-time following a period of shapeless, scrappy play the only thing one could really say about the opening 45 minutes was to wish the popular "Welbz" well.

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