With both defenders ruled out and Laurent Koscielny facing a late fitness test before the trip to The Stadium of Light, the Gunners are looking short at the back
The Gunners will be without their captain who is still struggling with an ankle injury whilst England left-back Gibbs is still recovering from this thigh strain picked up in the 2-2 draw with Liverpool last month.
Vermaelen's centre-back partner Koscielny will face a late fitness test as he faces a race against time to partner Per Mertesacker against a Sunderland team who are threatening in attack according to Wenger.
"They have real offensive potential, with Johnson, Fletcher, Sessegnon and now Danny Graham," the Gunners boss told reporters during his pre-match press conference.
The 63-year-old revealed better news on the injury front as both Aaron Ramsey and Francis Coquelin are expected to be fit for the trip to the Stadium of Light.