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Arsenal boss Arteta provides Nelson & Smith Rowe injury updates


Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta has, on Saturday, provided an update on the wellbeing of two members of his attacking ranks.

The Gunners, for those not aware, were back in action a short time ago.

Amid preparations for the Boxing Day return of the Premier League, Arteta and co. played host to Serie A heavyweights Juventus, in a friendly clash at the Emirates Stadium.

When all was said and done, it was the Bianconeri who emerged from proceedings triumphant, owing to a pair of own goals from Granit Xhaka and Rob Holding.

Arsenal’s main area of concern post-match, though, did not in fact come in the form of the result.

Instead, Mikel Arteta and co. were left to sweat over a fresh concern on the personnel front.

Midway through the first-half of action, Reiss Nelson, afforded a starting berth in the absence of both Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka, pulled up clutching his hamstring.

After being tended to by the hosts’ medical team, it was subsequently decided that wide-man Nelson was in no condition to continue, culminating in his tearful departure from proceedings:

Speaking on the back of the full-time whistle in north London, Mikel Arteta was therefore asked for an update on Nelson’s wellbeing.

And Arsenal’s boss went on to explain:

‘We don’t know the extent of the injury. The fact that he had to leave the pitch straight away is not good news, especially with someone like Reiss who is really powerful and fast. Let’s see what will happen. We know what we have to do and that doesn’t change the plans.’

On Emile Smith Rowe, forced to sit out Saturday’s clash amid ongoing efforts to recover from a long-term groin injury, Arteta went on to add:

‘Let’s see. Emile the last few days hasn’t been able to train but hopefully he can start next week. He’s been out for a while now and he needs some time to get back to speed, but we really need him. We’re gonna welcome him with both arms because he’s a really important player for us and we need him fit on the pitch.’

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Conor Laird

Conor Laird

Die-hard Juventus fan with a love for all things Italian, and a real soft spot for Arsenal cult heroes. Emmanuel Eboue, Nicklas Bendtner, Philippe Senderos... Give them all statues outside the Emirates.



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