Szczesny on course to start for Arsenal in crunch Manchester United clash

The Gunners' No.1 has given Arsene Wenger a boost by returning to full training on Monday and could even be fast-tracked into team against Reading in the Capital One Cup
By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent

Wojciech Szczesny is on course to start for Arsenal in the crunch Premier League clash against Manchester United on Saturday, can reveal.

The goalkeeper has been sidelined for six weeks with an ankle injury but returned to full training on Monday morning. understands that there is even a possibility the Arsenal No.1 could be fast-tracked into the team for the trip to Reading in the last-16 Capital One Cup tie on Tuesday night.

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Szczesny has played only two matches for Arsenal this season due to rib and ankle injuries, and has not featured since the 6-1 victory over Southampton on 15 September.

The Polish goalkeeper had been wearing a protective boot during his recovery but has now been given the all-clear to start playing again. revealed earlier this month that Szczesny had suffered a setback in his rehabilitation as his No.2 Lukasz Fabianski was ruled out for three months with ruptured ankle ligaments just as he was closing in on a first-team comeback.

Szszesny’s return is a boost for the Gunners, who have been forced to turn to Vito Mannone, who began the season third in the pecking order, in goal.

The 24-year-old Italian has not quite been able to seize his chance during the absence of his more established colleagues.

Despite conceding a creditable 11 goals in 10 matches in goal this season, Mannone has been guilty of a number of high-profile blunders, most recently when he gifted Norwich City the winner nine days ago.

Mannone has played in 10 of Arsenal’s 13 matches, while Szczesny and Argentinian Damien Martinez have stood between the sticks in two and one games respectively.