Shkodran Mustafi and Cedric Soares return to training ahead of Arsenal vs West Ham Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterFriday 6 Mar 2020 9:24 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link9.9kShares Comment Advertisement Shkodran Mustafi suffered a muscle injury against Olympiacos 10 days ago (Picture: Arsenal YouTube)Shkodran Mustafi is back in contention to feature for Arsenal against West Ham after he took part in first team training on Thursday.The much-maligned former Valencia centre-half has been one of the main beneficiaries of Mikel Arteta’s appointment as Unai Emery’s permanent successor. Mustafi had been told he was almost certain to have no future at the club by Emery, but Arteta has placed his faith in the 27-year-old and he has been rewarded with a series of commanding performances at the heart of a notoriously brittle Arsenal defence.The Germany international suffered what appeared to be a hamstring injury during Arsenal’s damaging Europa League defeat against Olympiacos last week and in the immediate aftermath of the loss, Arteta admitted he was unsure as to the extent of the injury.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTArsenal released footage of yesterday’s training session on their official YouTube account and Mustafi showed no ill-effects of the injury which forced him off in the 103rd minute against the Greek side. Cedric Soares featured in Arsenal’s training session ahead of Saturday’s game against West Ham (Picture: Arsenal YouTube)January recruit Pablo Mari impressed on his competitive debut against Portsmouth in the FA Cup on Monday and Arteta now has five fit central defenders to choose from with Rob Holding also back in contention. On the possibility of Mari featuring against the Hammers, Arteta said yesterday: ‘Well he has recovered really well from the game. He had 45 minutes with the Under-23s four days before that game.‘He played 90 minutes, he said he’s physically good, he trained well and I think he’s ready to play if we need him to on Saturday.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalFellow winter window recruit Cedric Soares, meanwhile, stepped up his recovery from the knee injury which has prevented him from featuring at all for his new club following his arrival on loan from Southampton nearly six weeks ago. The Portugal international was seen wearing heavy strapping on his left leg during the session but Arteta will hope he is back in contention soon, having opted to deploy Sokratis Papastathopoulos as a makeshift right-back to cover for Hector Bellerin, while Ainsley Maitland-Niles remains out of favour.MORE: Charlie Nicholas names the five most exciting youngsters at ArsenalMORE: Manchester United demand £25m for Roma target Chris SmallingFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page.
MUMBAI: Star Indian cricketer Rohit Sharma on Wednesday took to social media to laud former Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas, who recently called time on his illustrious career.Casillas suffered a heart attack during a Porto training session last year and hadn’t played any competitive football since April, 2019. Rohit, who is known to be a ‘Los Blancos’ fan and had even visited their stadium Santiago Bernabeu earlier this year, hailed Casillas for his trophy-laden stint in Spain. His tweet read: “Congratulations on a glorious career, San Iker! You’ve made your mark in @LaLigaEN’s history and inspired countless young players Clapping hands sign #Grac1as, @IkerCasillas.” Casillas, who led Spain to their first World Cup title in 2010 and helped his country win the 2008 and 2012 European championships, had a low-key farewell from the club he joined in 2015 after spending 25 years at Real Madrid. “The most important thing is the path you travel and the people who accompany you, not the destination that it takes you,” Casillas wrote on his Twitter handle in Spanish on Wednesday. “I think I can say, without hesitation, that this has been the right path and the dream destination. Thanks.” With 167 international caps, Casillas has the second-most appearances for the Spanish national team, making him the joint tenth-most capped footballer of all time. Casillas burst onto the scene as a teenager at Real Madrid and went on to make 725 appearances for the Spanish giants – helping them win five LaLiga titles and three Champions League crowns. (IANS) Also Watch: #NewsMakers: Bharat Bhushan Dev Choudhury, Sec. General Administration, Gov. of Assam, Dispur