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
Robin van Persie to Fenerbahce: Manchester United striker 'agrees to personal terms' with Turkish side
Arsenal defender Kieran Gibbs posts bizarre video of his Miami holiday being invaded by an iguana
Women's World Cup 2015: England secure third place as they beat Germany in extra time with penalty by Fara Williams
Why is it that there’s no women’s team at Manchester United? - Michael Calvin
Chelsea transfer news: Diego Costa wants a reunion with £25m Manchester United target Arda Turan... because he loves his kebabs
- 1 Isis propaganda video shows 25 Syrian soldiers executed by teenage militants in Palmyra
- 2 Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
- 3 The map showing the most dangerous tourist destinations in Europe, according to the Foreign Office
- 4 The biggest first date turnoff has been revealed
- 5 German man found living with 300 rats in tiny apartment
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture