Wenger: Campbell now very important to Arsenal

Date published: Friday 30th October 2015 11:16

Joel Campbell: Getting first-team action

Arsene Wenger says Joel Campbell can be a “very important player” for Arsenal over the next two to three months with Theo Walcott out injured.

Speaking at his press conference on Friday ahead of the trip to Swansea, Wenger revealed that he expects Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to be out for “20 days”, with Walcott “a fraction longer”.

It leaves Campbell in contention to make his first ever Premier League start for the club on the right wing at the Liberty Stadium.

Wenger said: “I have been very impressed with him. His attitude is outstanding. His daily dedication in training and his desire to improve is absolutely outstanding.

“He can be a big help for us, and he can play centre-forward – don’t forget that.

“In the coming two to three months he can be a very important player for us.”

As well as Oxlade-Chamberlain and Walcott, Arsenal are without Mikel Arteta (ankle), David Ospina (shoulder), Jack Wilshere (fibula), Danny Welbeck and Tomas Rosicky (both knee).

Wenger, however, insists there is enough cover in the squad to cope.

“It is always disappointing to lose players, but we are equipped, first of all, with the quality of our squad and we are equipped mentally as well ourselves to deal with anything,” said the Frenchman.

“Before the game against Everton, (Per) Mertesacker was sick and Gabriel came in so we have shown we can deal with that.”

Wenger added: “It is a challenge for me and for the players who come in to show their quality.

“At the end you can find yourself with a bigger squad which is what happened last season with (Francis) Coquelin and (Hector) Bellerin.”

Wenger is expecting a much-improved display from Tuesday night’s 3-0 Capital One Cup defeat at Sheffield Wednesday, where he had made the expected sweeping changes from Arsenal’s regular Premier League line-up.

“We came out of a strong performance against Everton and we know that is what is needed against Swansea,” he said.

“Last year against Swansea they are the only team who have beaten us twice, so we have a good challenge.”

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