Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is hoping stalwart defender Laurent Koscielny will be fit for tonight’s Champions League clash against Paris St Germain (8.45pm).
The France centreback caught a boot to the face in the Gunners’ 2-1 comeback win over Southampton last Saturday and his eye is badly swollen.
Wenger says: “He will be a little bit of a concern. The eye is already very swollen and it is closed up.”
And with club skipper Per Mertesacker still out with injury, Wenger looks to Koscielny as his deputy.
The boss adds: “He is one of the most experienced players we have here. He has been the longest-serving defender.
“He is one of our best players, and when I think about the squad when you pick a captain, you think of one with a good chance to play.
“If you never see the game, that’s not easy nowadays.
New centreback Skhrodran Mustafi will settle from the first whistle after a shaky start to his debut on Saturday.
And Wenger also hopes his new hitman Lucas Perez can announce himself with a goal.
The Frenchman adds: “I hope so. I think he got 17 goals last year. In the second half, I think he combined much better. It is not easy as well to start at home, the pressure is there for everybody and everybody has their eyes on them.
“You could see that especially with Mustafi, because in the second half he was much more comfortable than in the first.
“Let’s give [Lucas] time… not judge him too quickly.”