Oleksandr Zinchenko and Thomas Partey nearing Arsenal injury returns ahead of trip to Sheffield United

Oleksandr Zinchenko and Thomas Partey are planning to step up their workloads this week in the hope they can make the squad for Arsenal’s trip to Sheffield United.

The Gunners are travelling to Bramall Lane this time next week, with Partey and Zinchenko eager to make their comebacks.

The pair were close to making the squad for Arsenal’s 4-1 win over Newcastle on Saturday.

Partey has been out of action since October after injuring his thigh, but he was able to take part in training last week.

Zinchenko has been absent since the start of this month after a calf problem forced him off at half-time of the Gunners’ 3-1 win over Liverpool.

The return of Partey and Zinchenko would be a major boost for Arsenal, who have won their last six Premier League games in a row to close the gap on leaders Liverpool to just two points.

Mikel Arteta has, however, been light on defensive options during that time. For Saturday’s win over Newcastle, Cedric Soares was the only recognised defender on the bench.

Arsenal have a clear week coming up due to their next game not being until they travel to Sheffield United on Monday, which will give players more chance to return.

The squad have been given Sunday and Monday off after playing Porto and Newcastle in the space of four days last week.

Big boost: Arsenal could welcome the duo back for their trip to Sheffield United (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
Big boost: Arsenal could welcome the duo back for their trip to Sheffield United (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Gabriel Martinelli was one of those who felt the impact of the tight turnaround and he played just over an hour on Saturday before coming off for Leandro Trossard.

Arsenal will make a final decision on Partey and Zinchenko later this week after seeing how they progress.

The Gunners have been cautious with Partey and carefully built up his workload due to the fact he has been out for the best part of four months.

Arsenal were able to welcome back Gabriel Jesus last weekend. The striker, who has been out since the end of last month, was an unused substitute. The Brazilian had been suffering with a flare-up of his knee.