Arsenal’s manager, Mikel Arteta, addressed the media in anticipation of his team’s upcoming match against Bournemouth on the south coast.
The Gunners aimed to bounce back from their recent North London Derby setback, securing a victory midweek against Brentford in the Carabao Cup.
However, Arteta found himself grappling with the aftermath of a double injury blow suffered during the derby, affecting Declan Rice and Bukayo Saka.
These two key players were unable to participate in training leading up to the Brentford clash, prompting Arteta to provide an update during the press conference.
In reference to Declan Rice, Arteta revealed, “He wasn’t available.
He had to withdraw from the London Derby and has yet to return to training. We are awaiting further updates following today’s session.”
The absence of the England international added to the mounting injury concerns, with Leandro Trossard and Gabriel Martinelli already sidelined before the derby.
Arteta confirmed that Martinelli remained absent from the squad, stating, “He hasn’t trained either.
We’re eager to have him back, as we need him, but unfortunately, he remains unavailable.
The same goes for Saka and Trossard.”
Additionally, Arteta disclosed that William Saliba was dealing with a “knock,” which explained his absence from the Brentford match.
These injuries have raised concerns about the squad’s depth and overall fitness.
Given these setbacks, opportunities are likely to arise for players like Jorginho, Reiss Nelson, and possibly Emile Smith Rowe.
Arteta is tasked with managing a side that he comfortably dispatched at the Vitality Stadium last season.
The uncertainty surrounding the availability of key players necessitates tactical adjustments and the reliance on the team’s depth to secure a positive result against Bournemouth.
In the face of adversity, Arteta’s managerial acumen will be put to the test as he strives to navigate Arsenal through this challenging period and maintain the team’s competitive edge.