LONDON – Arsenal’s trip to face Leicester City on Sunday will provide another test of Arsene Wenger’s belief that his squad is strong enough to cope without Olivier Giroud.
The Frenchman suffered a broken leg in last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Everton and is expected to be out until January, depriving Wenger of his main striker.
With the transfer deadline approaching on Monday, Wenger has refused to rule out making a late effort to bring in a new face, but the Gunners boss maintains that he already has enough forward options to cover for the absent France forward.
Alexis Sanchez scored the winner while operating in the main striker role in the midweek victory over Besiktas in the Champions League playoff round and is again expected to lead the attack at the King Power stadium this weekend.
But Wenger insists the Chile international is just one of a number of players who can fill the role.
“The squad we have, we have enough to be successful. Why not? (Yaya) Sanogo, Sanchez, (Theo) Walcott, (Lukas) Podolski, Giroud. (Joel) Campbell. Of course we can be successful,” Wenger said.
“We buy when we have to strengthen the squad. We spend when we have to.
“It is harder to buy top, top players because everyone is in the market and we all know each other.”
Arsenal remains unbeaten at the start of the season, although it was forced to recover from falling two behind at Goodison Park and needed a last-minute winner to beat Crystal Palace.
Leicester may appear to be a less formidable opponent than Roberto Martinez’s Everton squad, but Wenger warned that his side cannot afford to take the newly promoted side lightly.
“They were impressive in their first two games. They are a team with a very good defense, good on the counter attack with two quick players on the flank. It’s a big challenge for us on Sunday,” Wenger said.
Arsenal will again be without Mikel Arteta and Kieran Gibbs, but influential Wales midfielder Aaron Ramsey will return after missing the Besiktas game because of suspension.
Meanwhile, Leicester’s new signing Esteban Cambiasso says he is eager to complete the set of playing in Europe’s elite leagues after previous stints in La Liga and Serie A.
The 34-year-old Argentine midfielder, capped 52 times by his country, arrived this week on a one-year deal and Leicester is now waiting to discover if he has received international clearance to make his debut against Arsenal.
“It’s important to play in the Premier League,” said the former Real Madrid and Inter Milan star.
“In the past I had great possibilities because I played in Italy, Spain and Argentina.
“But for my career and my future I need to play in the Premier League.
“This is a great possibility. I’m very happy because it’s the beginning of some more history.”
Leicester manager Nigel Pearson insists Cambiasso has been signed for soccer rather than commercial reasons.
“Let’s not get confused here, this is not a bums on seats signing,” said Pearson, who will again be without the injured Matty James and Matthew Upson.
“This is a football decision. There are some misconceptions. You have to sign players that are the right fit at any given time.
“Well-known players aren’t necessarily good players in my experience. Our players are recruited for footballing reasons.
“He’s been as big a driving force as we have been. He brings extra know-how and a vast array of experiences of world football.”