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The France international is nearing a return to first-team action for the north London side after featuring for the young Gunners in Wednesday's 1-1 draw with West Brom

Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby stepped up his return from injury by playing 65 minutes for the club's Under-21 side against West Brom on Wednesday.

The Frenchman, who has been out of action since being substituted during his side's 2-1 defeat to Chelsea on September 29, provided an assist for Andre Santos to equalise as the game finished 1-1.

And, after getting through over an hour unscathed, the midfielder was withdrawn to be replaced by Conor Henderson.

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But there was less positive news for team-mate Emmanuel Frimpong, who recently returned from a loan spell at Charlton, as he was red-carded in the final minute for two bookable offences.

Diaby has made just six first-team appearances so far this season due to his struggles with injury.

Back in November, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger admitted the 26-year-old's absences were a "concern", but emphasised the midfielder's importance to his plans.

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