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Gunners midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (knee) will be assessed ahead of the game.

Full-back Kieran Gibbs (groin) has returned to full training, but Carl Jenkinson (back), Andre Santos (ankle) and midfielder Abou Diaby (hamstring) are still out.

Ivory Coast forward Gervinho is still away at the African Nations Cup, but Morocco striker Marouane Chamakh is due back, although not in time for tomorrow. Midfielder Jack Wilshere suffered a setback in his rehabilitation from an ankle injury.

Blackburn captain Christopher Samba will again be missing from the squad for Saturday’s game against the Gunners.

Boss Steve Kean had felt the centre-back was not in the right frame of mind after having a transfer request turned down and revealed on Thursday that Samba was fit and available but would not be included.

New signings Bradley Orr and Marcus Olsson – twin brother of fellow Rover Martin – could make their debuts but leading scorer Ayegbeni Yakubu serves the last of a three-match ban and David Goodwillie (flu) may miss out again.

Arsenal (from): Szczesny, Sagna, Vermaelen, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Walcott, Song, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arteta, van Persie, Fabianski, Rosicky, Henry, Park, Coquelin, Benayoun, Arshavin, Miquel.

Blackburn (from): Robinson, Martin Olsson, Marcus Olsson, Orr, Givet, Dann, Dunn, Pedersen, Petrovic, Nzonzi, Lowe, Hoilett, Goodwillie, Bunn, Hanley, Henley, Formica, Vukcevic, Rochina, Modeste, Slew.

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