Vermaelen set to return for Chelsea clash

Returning... Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen is expected to play against London rival Chelsea, after suffering from a virus. (Getty Images)

Arsenal expects to have captain Thomas Vermaelen back from a virus for the side's showdown with English Premier League leader Chelsea.

But its goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny remains sidelined.

Emmanuel Frimpong returned to action from a long-term knee injury for the mid-week Capital One Cup win over Coventry City, but, along with fellow midfielder Jack Wilshere will sharpen his fitness in the Under-21 match.

Winger Tomas Rosicky and defender Bacary Sagna are expected to feature in the next few weeks.

Meanwhile, Brad Friedel will return in goal for Tottenham Hotspur's trip to Manchester United.

Hugo Lloris looks likely to be on the bench and defender Kyle Naughton could return after missing last week's win over Queens Park Rangers with a foot injury he sustained against Lazio in the UEFA Europa League group match.

Emmanuel Adebayor, Scott Parker, Jake Livermore, Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Younes Kaboul are all still sidelined with injuries.

Antonio Valencia is Manchester United's major injury concern ahead of its encounter with Spurs.

Valencia suffered a nasty knock on his ankle at Liverpool last week and Sir Alex Ferguson rates him as "doubtful".

Darren Fletcher and Scott Wootton are both in United's squad but are unlikely to play from the outset and Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney could start together for the first time.

Meanwhile, Liverpool is looking to secure a vital aay win when it travels to Norwich City.

Daniel Agger has a good chance of being fit for the clash, despite being carried off on a stretcher during last weekend's home defeat to Manchester United.

The centre-back sustained bone bruising but could retain his place in the starting line-up, although no decision has been made on forward Fabio Borini.

Midfielder Jonjo Shelvey is suspended for the English Premier League clash, while Martin Kelly's knee operation means Brendan Rodgers has a decision to make in defence, with Jose Enrique still injured.