Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Alexis and Aaron Ramsey will begin their pre-season preparations in earnest this week after recuperating from their exploits on international duty this summer.
Alexis picked up an ankle injury in the final of the Copa America Centenario on June 27 while Ramsey was kept busy, even though he was suspended, until 6 July when Wales lost to Portugal in the semi-final of Euro 2016.
Arsenal play two more friendlies before kicking off their Premier League campaign against Liverpool on 14 August; first against Viking FK in Norway then against Manchester City in Sweden.
“Not all of [the international players will be back],” the manager told Arsenal Player after last night’s 3-1 win against Chivas de Guadalajara in California.
“Ramsey will be involved, Sanchez will be involved. The latest players coming back will not be involved, that’s Ozil, Giroud and Koscielny, they are the last ones and I don’t think they will be involved on the tour on Thursday, but all the others will.”
The boss also reserved praise for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain after the England international lit up last night’s win with a fine solo effort; his second of pre-season. The midfielder has missed big chunks of the last two seasons through injury but appears to be in fine fettle at the moment.
“This is a very important season for Alex,” said Wenger. “He was out for a very long time, I’m cautious with him at the moment but he’s getting better in every game and that’s good to see.”