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Thursday 01 November 2012

In brief: Liverpool receive Lucas fitness boost

Gervinho to miss key matches with ankle injury; Jermaine Jenas to remain at Forest

  • Lucas Leiva could return to action this month for Liverpool

  • Gervinho (left) scored for Arsenal against Chelsea earlier this season

  • Franco Di Santo's goals this season have been recognised by the Argentina coach

Liverpool have been boosted by news that Lucas Leiva is set to return from a thigh injury this month.

Brendan Rodgers, the Liverpool manager, said the Brazil midfielder, who has been hit by injury over the past 12 months, playing only four times for the Reds, was recovering ahead of schedule having been injured against Manchester City.

"Lucas has been out on the field in the last week or so which is great," Rodgers told the Liverpool Daily Post. "He's not doing multi-directional movements yet but he's doing a lot of straight-line running and endurance work.

"I'm anticipating maybe another three weeks but his professionalism is great and he'll get back probably sooner than is anticipated."

Gervinho to miss three weeks

Arsenal have been dealt an injury blow with news that Gervinho will be sidelined for the next three weeks with an ankle injury.

"We have no comebacks; no Wojciech, no Gibbs, no Diaby"
Arsene Wenger

The Ivory Coast international suffered the injury shortly after coming on as a second-half substitute during his side's Barclays Premier League victory against Queens Park Rangers last Saturday.

Speaking at Thursday's press conference Arsene Wenger, the Gunners manager, confirmed the 25-year-old forward would be out of action for three weeks with goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, full-back Kieran Gibbs and midfielder Abou Diaby also still sidelined.

"Compared to last week Gervinho is of course out, for we think three weeks," said Wenger. "We have no comebacks, no Wojciech [Szczesny], no [Kieran] Gibbs, no [Abou] Diaby."

Gervinho, who is Arsenal's leading scorer in the Barclays Premier League with three goals, will therefore miss Arsenal's trip to face Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday, as well as subsequent London derbies against Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur on 10 and 17 November respectively.

Tottenham extend Jenas loan to Forest

Tottenham Hotspur have announced that their midfielder Jermaine Jenas will remain on loan at Nottingham Forest until the new year.

Jenas,l 29, returned to the East Midlands on loan last month but that deal expired last weekend. However, talks between Forest and Spurs this week have resulted in his stay being extended until January 2, 2013.

Franco Di Santo earns first Argentina call-up

A number of players in the Barclays Premier League have been called up for international friendlies that are due to take place on November 14.

Wigan Athletic forward Franco Di Santo was rewarded for his displays in the Barclays Premier League, where he has scored three goals this season, with a first call-up to the Argentina squad for their match against Saudi Arabia in Riyadh.

He is joined in the squad by Fabricio Coloccini, of Newcastle United, and Manchester City’s Pablo Zabaleta and Sergio Aguero.

International squads for friendlies on November 14

Argentina (to play Saudi Arabia in Riyadh): Pablo Zabaleta (Manchester City), Fabricio Coloccini (Newcastle United), Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Franco Di Santo (Wigan Athletic)

Brazil (to play Colombia in New Jersey, in the US): David Luiz (Chelsea), Ramires (Chelsea), Sandro (Tottenham), Oscar (Chelsea)

Zambia (to play South Africa in Johannesburg): Emmanuel Mayuka (Southampton)

Republic of Ireland (to face Greece in Dublin): Kieren Westwood (Sunderland), Seamus Coleman (Everton), John O'Shea (Sunderland), Stephen Kelly (Fulham), Shane Duffy (Everton), Ciaran Clark (Aston Villa), James McCarthy (Wigan Athletic), David Meyler (Sunderland), Glenn Whelan (Stoke City), Conor Clifford (Chelsea), James McClean (Sunderland), Robbie Brady (Manchester United), Wes Hoolahan (Norwich City), Jon Walters (Stoke City)

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Key Points

  • Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva set to return from thigh injury this month
  • Arsenal forward Gervinho ruled out for three weeks with ankle injury
  • Jermaine Jenas's loan from SPurs to Nottingham Forest is extended