Laurent Koscielny looks set to play some part as Arsenal under-21s take on Pompey in the Checkatrade Trophy tomorrow night.
The centre-half, 33, who has collected 51 international caps for France, is continuing his recovery from an Achilles injury picked up in the Gunners’ Europa League semi-final defeat at the hands of Atletico Madrid in May.
And it looks as though the Frenchman will be involved at some stage for Arsenal’s young guns in the second-round encounter at Fratton Park.
Koscielny made his long-awaited return to competitive football last week.
The defender played 45 minutes as Arsenal under-23s were beaten 5-0 by Derby County in a PL2 fixture.
Club captain Koscielny arrived from Ligue One outfit Lorient back in 2010.
Since his arrival at the Emirates he has gone on to make more than 200 Gunners appearances.
And the French star will be looking to use the cup clash against the Blues to attempt to build up his fitness after more than six months out.
Kenny Jackett is expected to make a number of changes as Pompey look to continue their fine form.
The Blues beat Rochdale in the FA Cup on Sunday and will look to make it seven successive wins against Arsenal in the Checkatrade Trophy.
But whoever leads the line for the Blues tomorrow will face a tough task trying to get the better of French international Koscielny – should he play a part.