By Arsenal correspondent Tony Hughes
Arsenal duo Petr Cech and Aaron Ramsey are on schedule to return after the international break, according to Arsene Wenger.
But long-term absentees Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere are still some way from first-team returns.
The senior Gunners quartet are all sidelined at the key juncture of the season and will once again be absent when Wenger’s side travel to Everton on Saturday aiming to get their title challenge back on track.
Arsenal crashed out of the Champions League on Wednesday night three days after Watford knocked them out of the FA Cup to leave their silverware hopes this season resting upon clawing back an 11-point gap on leaders Leicester.
Wenger is hopeful that key pair Cech (calf) and Ramsey (thigh) can be involved when Arsenal host Watford on Saturday, 2 April.
“The players who could be back after the international break are Ramsey, Cech,” said Wenger, speaking at his media briefing on Friday. “Cazorla[’s recovery] is slow, Wilshere is showing good signs of recovery.”
Cazorla has been out since late November, initially with knee ligament damage but then he suffered an achilles injury in the final stages of his rehabilitation.
Wenger explained: “Cazorla’s knee is perfect. He has a little achilles problem.”
In other Arsenal injury news, Mathieu Flamini has been ruled out of the Gunners’ clash against Everton with a hamstring problem.