The Premier League finally returns for Arsenal in less than a weeks’ time, with West Ham United making the short trip to North London in an Emirates Stadium showdown.
Ahead of the all-important season re-opener, Mikel Arteta has given updates on the injury front at the club, including the news of Gabriel Jesus’ devastating blow.
Speaking to the club’s website, the Spaniard admitted it was difficult to put an exact time frame on just how long the Brazilian forward will be on the side lines.
“With Gabby it’s very difficult to put a timeframe on his recovery. It was a significant injury and I prefer not to give any dates away. It will take some time for sure.”
It was confirmed that Jesus had successful surgery on his knee just over two weeks ago, the forward has shared his road to recovery as he was pictured at the club yesterday on crutches.
More bad news came as Arteta revealed that Reiss Nelson had picked up an injury in Arsenal’s friendly at the Emirates last week.
The winger was substituted in an injury that Arteta has explained will see him away from the action for a number of weeks.
“He is going to be out for a while I think. I’m talking about weeks. Let’s see how he reacts to the next few days but he felt something straight away and with sprinters, that’s not a good sign.”
Some positive news on the injury front is that Emile Smith-Rowe is said to be close to a return following a complex groin injury back in September.
Arteta explained the importance that the return of Smith-Rowe will have on the team.
“He’s starting to train again. We’ve done a lot of things with Emile; his attitude has been great. He’s a huge talent that we need for the second part of the season at his best, because his contribution is going to be key to the team.”
It’s crucial that the Gunners have players fit and ready to push for the second half of the season to ensure it’s as impressive as the first half.
Arsenal host West Ham at 8pm on Boxing Day.