Arsenal goalkeeper David Ospina is facing a race against time to prove his fitness for Wednesday night's Champions League showdown with Monaco, after hurting his back in a seemingly innocuous incident against Crystal Palace last weekend.
Ospina rushed off his line to make an acrobatic clearance in the hard-fought 2-1 win for the Gunners, but landed awkwardly and is suffering with back pain despite seeing out the remainder of the match.
Eurosport have this morning reported that Ospina will have to come through checks over the next 24 hours to keep his place in between the posts, with Wojciech Szczesny in line for a recall should he fall short.
Ospina has made impression on Wenger
Wenger has preferred the Colombian international to Szczesny in the Premier League in 2015, with Ospina starting six successive matches and largely impressing.
The 26-year-old has a better shot-to-save ratio than any other goalkeeper in the top flight at this stage of the season, which is exactly why if anywhere near 100% he'll start ahead of Szczesny in Europe for the first time tomorrow night.
Wenger has made the right call
Ospina will be desperate not to let Szczesny get a chance to redeem himself in a big match, because he's largely proved steady and reliable in the Polish international's place over the last two months.
The South American stopper may not look commanding or physically imposing, but he has a nice habit of being in the right place at the right time.
Last weekend's narrow success at Selhurst Park was a prime example, with Ospina clearing his lines consistently and also getting a huge slice of luck as a late Yannick Bolasie cross cannoned back off the post and into his grateful gloves.
Wenger will want to maintain that winning momentum and keep Ospina as his number one, but that call could yet be taken out of his hands.
Arsenal fans, are you happy with Ospina as your number one goalkeeper? Let us know by having your say in the comment box below!
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