Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri included in Arsenal Champions League squad
Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri have been included in Arsenal's Champions League squad for their play-off round tie with Udinese.
Press Association Sport understands the Gunners have named both midfielders in their 25-man A-list for this month's two-legged clash, despite intense speculation both are set to leave the Emirates Stadium.
Were captain Fabregas or contract rebel Nasri to feature in the contest, they would be cup-tied if they were then to complete respective moves to Barcelona and Manchester City.
That would seriously reduce their value to their potential new employers, who would be reluctant to pay huge fees for the players.
Nasri is suspended for the first leg against Udinese, which takes place a week today, but will be available for the second leg eight days later.
Fabregas can play next Tuesday and his inclusion in the squad may force Barca to speed up their efforts to bring him back to the Nou Camp.
City could elect to bide their time with Nasri, although reports suggest they are close to breaking Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger's resistance to selling the France star, whose contract expires next summer.
Meanwhile, Japanese youngster Ryo Miyaichi was today granted the work permit he required to play first-team football for Arsenal this season.
The 18-year-old arrived in January and was loaned to Feyenoord while awaiting the clearance needed to represent the Gunners in the UK.
A Football Association panel today decided to grant Miyaichi a work permit on the grounds he was an "exceptional talent".
Latest in Sport
- 1 Exodus Gods and Kings: Ridley Scott never considered casting 'Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such' in lead role
- 2 This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
- 3 'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
- 4 Scientists predict green energy revolution after incredible new graphene discoveries
- 5 Michael Buerk wishes he'd killed Jimmy Savile when he had the chance - by pushing him overboard a cruise ship
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Obama: The only people with the right to object to immigration are Native Americans
Rochester aftermath: Sacking of Emily Thornberry will make work of Labour MPs '10 times harder'
Ed Miliband's 'north London set' must be demolished to save Labour, say critics