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By ESPN Staff

Ljungberg likely to miss start of Arsenal season

Arsenal midfielder Freddie Ljungberg is a major doubt for both next month's Champions League qualifier and the start of the new Premiership season.

The Sweden midfielder has been struggling with an ankle problem, which manager Arsene Wenger feels may not even clear up in time for the 29-year-old to feature against Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium on August 19.

'Ljungberg has an inflammation around his ankle,' said Wenger, currently away with the squad in Austria, where the Gunners beat Mattersburg on Tuesday night.

Wenger told Arsenal's official website: 'He has had an injection - but I do not think he will be completely ready for the start of the Premiership season.'

Last season's Champions League runners-up will learn who they face in the third qualifying round on Friday.

The tie will be played over two legs - on August 8/9 and 22/23 - with the winners taking their place in the lucrative stages of the Europe's elite club competition.