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Arsenal (A) Sun 1 Mar 2015, 14:05, Barclays Premier League


Roberto Martinez is optimistic Phil Jagielka will be fit to face Manchester City but Sylvain Distin is rated at ‘50/50’ for the final home game of the season.

Jagielka has missed the last 11 matches with a hamstring injury, while a similar complaint ruled Distin out of Saturday’s trip to Southampton.

And Martinez says he will leave it until the last possible moment before deciding whether both can be involved against Manuel Pellegrini’s title contenders.

Speaking to evertontv on Tuesday morning, Martinez said: “Phil has done really well in his programme and has developed strength in his muscles. He looks completely regenerated and is desperate to be available.

“It will be a late call whether he is available or not but I would be surprised if he doesn’t make the squad for Saturday.

“Sylvain Distin again is pushing himself to be available. We need to carry on with the programme that he has and make sure that the treatment is bringing a good effect.

“I would say he is 50/50 for the weekend but now we have hope that we will see Sylvain before the seasons ends which is a fantastic bonus.”

It was announced by the Club on Monday afternoon that Leighton Baines is set to win his race to be fit for Manchester City’s visit to Goodison Park.

Martinez reiterated this news, explaining that the England man was responding well to treatment after he was forced from the field in the final minutes at St Mary’s last weekend.

The Blues boss continued: “Leighton did incredibly well on Saturday to be on the pitch after having a knock because he had some discomfort in his knee. We had the tests and the scans, and everything is very positive.

“He’s going to be treated over the next few days to see how he responds but we don’t expect any major problem, so hopefully he can be involved in Saturday’s game.”

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