Injuries only obstacle for Arsenal says Mikel Arteta

 

Midfielder Mikel Arteta would love to see what a fully-fit Arsenal squad could achieve.

The Gunners head into their final eight Barclays Premier League matches having rediscovered their form and put together seven straight wins which have lifted them above Tottenham into third place.

While captain Robin van Persie has enjoyed a largely injury-free campaign to score 33 goals, manager Arsene Wenger has not been able to call upon England midfielder Jack Wilshere all season because of a niggling ankle problem, while several other key men, including defenders Thomas Vermaelen and Bacary Sagna, have all spent a frustrating time in the London Colney treatment room.

Arteta, who has started 25 Premier League games, feels with everyone firing on all cylinders, Arsenal would be more than a match for any side.

"We have been hit with important, long-term injuries the whole season that really, really affect the team," Arteta said in Sport Magazine.

"I would like to see this team playing with the same XI for 10-15 games - then we could talk about if we were good enough or not.

"Now we are starting to do it and we are starting to get really good results, so for me the biggest concern is to stop the injuries."

Arsenal are understood to have now agreed the formalities of an £11million deal to bring in Germany striker Lukas Podolski from Cologne, but a public announcement has been delayed at the request of the Bundesliga club, who are fighting against relegation.

Wenger is expected to further bolster the playing staff over the summer, but Arteta feels Arsenal already have enough within the group, if they could only all stay fit.

The Spaniard, 30, added: "Obviously if you spend a lot of money to bring in top players you have a better chance because you have a bigger squad and you can change the team around but, for me, a key thing with our squad is the injuries."

Arsenal are hopeful centre-half Laurent Koscielny will be available at QPR tomorrow having pulled out of the Aston Villa game last weekend during the warm-up with a knee problem.

With their lead over Spurs only three points, Wenger accepts there can be little room for complacency.

"This is the period where what we do matters the most, so we just want to keep our focus on this and not worry about anybody else's results," the Arsenal manager said.

"We have shown both footballing and mental qualities in recent weeks and now we need to continue our development."

Wenger, meanwhile, could be handed a European touchline ban should UEFA announce the decision to their disciplinary case following a confrontation with referee Damir Skomina in the wake of Arsenal's Champions League exit against AC Milan last month, which came despite a 3-0 win at Emirates Stadium.

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Valerie Trierweiler’s book paints Hollande as a cold-hearted hypocrite
people
Arts and Entertainment
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
filmsMockingjay Part 1 taking hit franchise to new levels
Life and Style
techSweet Peach says scent 'shows more important things are working'
Sport
Diego Costa, Ross Barkley, Arsene Wenger, Brendan Rodgers, Alan Pardew and Christian Eriksen
footballRodgers is right to be looking over his shoulder, while something must be done about diving
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

In a world of Saudi bullying, right-wing Israeli ministers and the twilight of Obama, Iran is looking like a possible policeman of the Gulf

Iran is shifting from pariah to possible future policeman of the Gulf

Robert Fisk on our crisis with Iran
The young are the new poor: A third of young people pushed into poverty

The young are the new poor

Sharp increase in the number of under-25s living in poverty
Greens on the march: ‘We could be on the edge of something very big’

Greens on the march

‘We could be on the edge of something very big’
Revealed: the case against Bill Cosby - through the stories of his accusers

Revealed: the case against Bill Cosby

Through the stories of his accusers
Why are words like 'mongol' and 'mongoloid' still bandied about as insults?

The Meaning of Mongol

Why are the words 'mongol' and 'mongoloid' still bandied about as insults?
Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible