REUTERS – Arsenal are hoping to complete the signing of midfielder Mohamed Elneny from Swiss champions FC Basel by the end of the week, with only work permit issues standing in the way of the switch, manager Arsene Wenger said on Monday.
With midfield trio Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Francis Coquelin all on the sidelines, Elneny would be an welcome addition to squad, which was stretched thin during the festive period.
“It’s his visa and work permit that are holding it up but we are positive it can happen this week,” Wenger told reporters at a news conference ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool.
Wenger said the game with Juergen Klopp’s men will come too soon for winger Alexis Sanchez, who is currently nursing a hamstring injury and has not featured for the Gunners since November.
“We think he will be short for Wednesday, he has a chance to be available for Sunday (against Stoke). He is always keen to play. If you listen to Alexis, he can always play – even when he is injured,” Wenger said.
“We try to be cautious. With a muscular injury you never exactly how big the risk but he is very close. If you look at him training he is very close.”
(Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Chopra)