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first_img The Spanish midfielder left Istanbul in a protective boot following the midweek goalless Champions League play-off first leg against Besiktas, and is set to miss Saturday’s trip to former club Everton. The full extent of Arteta’s problem is yet to be determined but Wenger accepts to lose the defensive midfielder for a long period would be a blow, and may well in turn force his hand to try to bring in cover ahead of the closing of the transfer window, with Real Madrid’s Sami Khedira and William Carvalho at Sporting Lisbon reported targets. “We have just Mikel Arteta who is for sure out for the Everton game. Everybody else we have to check this morning, but we have no major problem apart from Mikel,” said Wenger at Thursday’s media conference. “He had a scan yesterday afternoon. I haven’t got the result. I have a meeting at 10am to check about that. I don’t know how long he will be out for. “We will be a bit short of course. If it is a long-term injury, that puts us in a position where we have to be creative.” Asked if he was generally keen to bring in a defensive midfielder as cover, Wenger said: “We are not against that. “We are like you, we listen to the names, but sometimes I look who we buy in the media, but at the moment as I told you we are not in an emergency case. “We have the players we want but we are open as well to any opportunity until the end of the transfer window who can strengthen our defensive department in quality and number.” Arsenal have also been linked with a move for Greek defender Kostas Manolas from Olympiacos. “I can’t tell you how likely I am (to sign anyone), I just said to you I am open to doing it. It has to be linked with the needed quality,” said Wenger. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits he could have to get “creative” in the transfer market if captain Mikel Arteta’s ankle injury proves serious. “If you ask today 20 top clubs in the world what they look for, they all look for the same positions, so that means it is not necessarily out there.” Full-back Kieran Gibbs and forward Yaya Sanogo missed the trip to Turkey because of respective hamstring problems. The Gunners, though, will be boosted by the return of German World Cup winning trio Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski and Mesut Ozil, who could all feature in the squad at Goodison Park ahead of a more likely return for the second leg against Besiktas next Wednesday. Press Associationlast_img read more


first_imgCordell Hudson was quick to point out that the only touchdown given up by the Syracuse defense should have been a sack.But with pass rushers having to pull up short of the quarterbacks, Austin Wilson was able to loft a 36-yard touchdown pass to Adly Enoicy on a seam route.And count it or not — in a makeshift scrimmage that had no clock or score — SU’s annual spring game lent an encouraging look at a retooled defense. According to the stat sheet distributed by SU Athletics after the scrimmage, the defense held the offense to less than 2 yards per carry and 21 completions on 48 pass attempts.First team formingThere was no depth chart prior to the spring game and Syracuse likely won’t publicly settle positional battles until the week leading into the season opener against Rhode Island.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textBut with cornerback Wayne Morgan sidelined with a lower-leg injury, safety Rodney Williams out with the flu, and defensive end Isaiah Johnson also absent, this 11 looked something like a first team.Defensive line: DE Ron Thompson, DE Donnie Simmons, DT Kayton Samuels, DT John RaymonLinebackers: OLB Marqez Hodge, MLB Zaire Franklin, OLB Parris BennettSecondary: CB Julian Whigham, CB Corey Winfield, FS Chauncey Scissum, SS Antwan CordyUnderclassmenRising sophomores Samuels, Franklin, Bennett and Cordy (all listed above), mostly ran with returning starters, and redshirt freshman Cordell Hudson made a handful of impressive plays in coverage. Redshirt freshman linebacker Jonathan Thomas was also in the mix, spelling Bennett at strong side linebacker and finishing with six tackles.Cordy — who is learning both the cornerback and safety spots — played alongside Scissum at strong safety, and laid a pair of big hits in the middle of the field. Cordy finished with four total tackles.Bennett sniffed out an option pitch to running back George Morris II and wrapped him up in the backfield, and deflected a pass attempt to Jamal Custis over the middle a few plays later.In all, it was a solid showing by Syracuse’s young defensive personnel.“I thought Parris Bennett had a couple nice hits. Zaire Franklin looked like he had a lot of tackles. I have the worst seat in the house standing behind it,” SU head coach Scott Shafer said.“… But for the most part, I think those kids have played good football this spring.”Loose endsWhile Thompson and Simmons haven’t been officially named the starting defensive end pair, they were quick off the edge against the first- and second-team offensive linemen.Thompson and Simmons are both seniors and will look to fill holes left by Robert Welsh and Micah Robinson. Thompson’s usual position is defensive end but he shifted into the interior of the defensive line due to injuries last season.The pair finished the spring game with a combined five sacks — which accounted for all of SU’s sacks — and six tackles for loss. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 4, 2015 at 4:31 pm Contact Jesse: [email protected] | @dougherty_jesselast_img read more

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