Bild claim Mertesacker is ready to return

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Per Mertesacker could make a return to the Arsenal first team fold sooner than expected with German publication Bild claiming the centre-back is due to return to training later this week.

The giant defender has been sidelined for two months since rolling his ankle at Sunderland, but despite undergoing surgery has made swift progress with his rehabilitation.

It remains to be seen whether Mertesacker forces his way back into contention, however, with Johan Djourou set to deputise for Laurent Koscielny for two games (the latter picking up a ban after reaching his tenth yellow of the campaign versus City), Arsene Wenger will no doubt be pleased to have his summer signing as a potential option having previously ruled him out for the season.

News of Mertesacker’s recovery is arguably an even bigger boost to Jogi Löw as the German national team coach prepares his squad for Euro 2012.

“So far everything is going according to plan, healing and prognosis is good,” Löw is quoted as saying.

An experienced member of the German national set-up, it looks as though the former Werder Bremen man will feature in Poland and Ukraine when the tournament kicks off in mid-June.

Tip of the cap to @simonafc for the heads up. 

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