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26 May 2024

Martinez fit for Arsenal, says Bayern's Heynckes


Bayern Munich midfielder Javi Martinez is set to face Arsenal in Tuesday's Champions League clash, coach Jupp Heynckes said on Sunday, after the Spain star recovered from a foot injury.

The 24-year-old sat out Bayern's 2-0 Bundesliga win at VfL Wolfsburg on Friday with a heavily bruised big toe, but having trained over the weekend, is expected to play in the last 16, first-leg clash at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium.

"As things stand at the moment, it looks really good. He is available again," said Heynckes ahead of Monday morning's flight to London.

"We have to see how the injury reacts, but I think it'll be ok."

Martinez has forged a strong defensive midfield partnership alongside Germany star Bastian Schweinsteiger this season and his influence was missing against Wolfsburg.

Only a stoppage time goal by Bayern replacement Arjen Robben put the victory beyond doubt as Munich picked up their fifth-straight victory and have yet to concede a goal in 2013.

Against Arsenal, Bayern will be without reserve striker Claudio Pizarro (throat infection), defender Jerome Boateng (suspended) and centre-back Holger Badstuber, who is out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.

Although Arsenal were knocked out of the FA Cup on Saturday after their 1-0 defeat at home to Championship side Blackburn Rovers, Heynckes said he expects a tough match against the Gunners in London.

"Despite the result, Arsenal have found their rhythm again in the last few weeks, they are very good going forwards and are an excellent team," said the 67-year-old.

"They have wonderful players in their ranks and I'm wary of underestimating them.

"They have found their way again and they can pose a great danger to us."