Pablo Aimar is set to return to Valencia’s starting line-up tonight for the first time since being sidelined since mid-November.
Aimar, who has been Valencia’s most influential player this season, played the last 15 minutes of Valencia’s 2-0 victory over Racing Santander in the Spanish League at the weekend.
Aimar is expected to play a key role in Valencia’s 4-4-1-1 formation against Arsenal at Highbury. However, Spanish international goalkeeper Santiago Canizares and Argentine international winger Kily Gonzalez are injured and will not play.
Aimar has dismissed recent speculation that a number of English clubs had made offers to tempt him away from the Mestella.
‘I want tostay at Valencia,’ he said.
‘I have no intention of moving and so I am taking no notice of the rumours that have appeared in the press.
‘I have no doubts at all. I am very happy with the team, the city, the club and the fans and that is why I don’t want to move.’
Arsenal are set to welcome back goalkeeper David Seaman, but could be without captain Patrick Vieira, who picked up a thigh injury in training yesterday.
‘If we play him, we risk losing him for longer,’ Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. Brazilian Edu is the most likely replacement for Vieira.
: Seaman – Luzhny, Keown, Campbell, Cole – Ljungberg, Vieira or Edu, Gilberto Silva, Pires – Bergkamp, Henry.
Valencia: Palop – Curro Torres, Ayala, Pellegrino, Carboni – Rufete, Albelda, Baraja, Vicente – Aimar – Carew.