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Gunners buoyed by Cesc return

Arsenal will be buoyed by the return of star striker Cesc Fabregas to training ahead of their Champions League match against Shaktar Donetsk.

sports Updated: Oct 19, 2010 00:00 IST

Arsenal will be buoyed by the return of star striker Cesc Fabregas to training ahead of their Champions League match against Shaktar Donetsk.

The captain returns to training after a month out due to a hamstring injurie, increasing the gunners’ firepower against the Ukrainian team.

Arsenal hasn’t been performing at top levels recently, having lost to West Bromwich Albion and Chelsea in the English Premier League, and narrowly edging a victory against Birmingham this weekend.

Their showdown against Shaktar could revitalize the team and keep them at the top of their group; they currently have nine points from three games.

Returning to the Emirates Stadium will be Shakhtar’s Brazilian-born contingent is former Arsenal old boy Eduardo Da Silva, the Croatian international who signed for the club in July after three seasons with the Gunners.

The 27-year-old has struggled to win a place in Shakhtar’s starting line-up this season and may not start on Tuesday.

However Eduardo believes the Ukrainian champions are ready to ambush Wenger’s men and has been priming coach Mircea Lucescu with inside information about his old team-mates. “We’ve talked a bit about the forthcoming games,” Eduardo told The Observer.
“I said that we can surprise Arsenal in the same way Olympiakos did last season by beating them 1-0.

In another timely recovery, Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo has shaken off his relatively poor early-season form in perfect time for Tuesday’s Champions League Group G clash with fellow European giants AC Milan.

The meeting between the two clubs, who have won 16 European Cups between them, is the pick of matchday three in the continent’s elite club competition.

Real, coached by Ronaldo’s compatriot Jose Mourinho, began their bid for a 10th European Cup with victories over Group G rivals Ajax Amsterdam and Auxerre and top the standings on six points.

Milan were held to a 1-1 draw in Amsterdam at the end of last month and are second on four.

Chelsea also head east to Moscow to play Spartak tonight knowing that a third victory in three games would virtually assure them of a place in the last 16.