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Arsenal welcome injury boost

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta will have been buoyed by the return of Kieran Tierney to training on Tuesday ahead of a big week for the Gunners.

The north Londoners face a Europa League last-32 tie against Benfica in Rome on Thursday, with the match taking place in Rome due to travel bans on countries with dangerous coronavirus variants.

The Gunners then host Manchester City in the Premier League on Sunday, when they will be looking to build on last weekend’s 4-2 victory over Leeds United that lifted them back into the top half of the table.

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Tierney missed that match and has spent the last month on the sidelines with a leg injury, but the club teased his return in a tweet posted on Tuesday.

A video of a small-sided game showed Tierney in action, and the Scot curled home a fine goal to show that he could well be over the worst of his injury.

Speaking after the Leeds game, the Arsenal boss said Thomas Partey – another player who has missed the last few games with injury – probably won’t be able to return in Rome, but he still had hopes for Tierney.

“It seems unlikely [on Partey] at the moment,” he said.

“But probably if there is one player who has got a bigger chance, it’s Kieran, because probably in the next few days he can start to do some parts with the team.

“But I don’t know how it is going to evolve when he gets a little bit closer to training with the group.”

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