Time To Release The Beast?
Arsene Wenger says that Julio Baptista could start against Newcastle on Saturday. The Brazilian, nicknamed 'the beast`, returned to full training only two days ago after missing 6 weeks with a hamstring injury.
Vital Arsenal revealed that the Brazilian was fit for action yesterday but the news that could start comes as quite a surprise after such a long lay off.
Under normal circumstances the tank-like midfielder almost certainly wouldn`t have started but a combination of Gilberto`s absence and the power Newcastle have in midfield could force Wenger into starting Julio in midfield.
Baptista has taken his time out to work on other aspects of his game and Wenger says that he will consider starting him: "Bapista has been able to work extremely hard in the last four or five weeks.
"Contrary to Freddie who was a little bit in and out, Baptista was at a consistent practice level and he looks sharp.
"I don't know if I will start him or not, but he is in the squad."
Arsenal are also boosted by Tomas Rosicky`s return to first team training. The fierce-footed Czech midfielder started full training on Friday morning. He is not included in the squad to face Newcastle and will still be a little short for the visit of Hamburg but Wenger says he will return for the trip to Bolton: "He will be short for Tuesday night. "But he should be available for Bolton."