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Unai Emery has said that Hector Bellerin and Kieran Tierney will need at least another week of first-team training before they can be considered for selection, with Under-23 games earmarked for their Arsenal comeback.
Emery confirmed that he has not set a date on which he could use either Bellerin or Tierney.
Bellerin has been sidelined since January with a knee injury whilst Tierney arrived at Arsenal from Celtic last month with a groin injury.
“We need to look at the next steps in each training and also if we decide to play with U23s,” Emery said of Bellerin and Tierney. “They did this week the first time training normally with us.
“We want the next week to take the normality training with us. After that week we can decide.”
Emery also confirmed that Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira are “ready” to play after picking up knocks during the international break whilst Rob Holding has “earned” first team minutes after his performances with the U23s in his own comeback from a knee injury. However he stopped short of confirming whether the centre-back will be available for Sunday’s trip to Watford.
Emery said: “[Holding] earned matches with U23s… With more minutes with U23 he can be closer to give us his performance.
“At the moment we are working with three centre-backs, thinking on Sunday, now four. Rob is now the five, [Konstantinos] Mavropanos the sixth.”