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Fabregas 'feeling really good'

Cesc Fabregas remains optimistic he will be fit to face Barcelona and believes having time off after sustaining the injury means he will "come back stronger".

Nasri: Barca can't handle pressure
Cesc on course, Song doubtful
Puyol in line for Gunners return

Fabregas has been out of action since being forced off with a hamstring problem during the victory over Stoke on February 23, and he has not been included in the squad for Saturday's game against Sunderland.

However, although it is not yet certain whether he will be fit to make his return to the Camp Nou on Tuesday, he is upbeat about his chances.

"As far as my injury is concerned, I am feeling really good at the moment," he wrote in his programme notes for Saturday's game. "I am doing everything I possibly can to get ready as soon as I can.

"Physically I feel good and it was good to have a bit of a rest too because I am sure I will come back stronger.

"It may have even been possible for me to be on the bench for today's game, but we decided together that it would be better for me to rest well instead, have a good training session on Sunday, take a look Monday and then hopefully fly to Barcelona.

"I am optimistic that everything should be okay for Tuesday."

Arsenal have already confirmed Robin van Persie and Theo Walcott have no chance of featuring against Barcelona, while Alex Song is a serious doubt.

Barca, meanwhile, have been boosted by goalkeeper Victor Valdes' return to fitness, although Carles Puyol has yet to recover full fitness.

"[Valdes] is able to play," assistant coach Tito Vilanova said in Friday's press conference ahead of the meeting with Real Zaragoza. "He trained this morning and this evening, and felt perfect.

"The best thing would be for [Puyol] to recover properly. There is one more training session, so tomorrow we'll see - we don't want to force the player."

Vilanova took charge of the press conference as Pep Guardiola has been troubled by a slipped disc, but Sport reports that he has been given the all-clear to return to the bench for Saturday's game.

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