Arsenal request postponement upon squad shortage
Arsenal have become the latest side to request a Premier League game being postponed, with the Gunners seemingly unable to field a side.
This, they reveal, is due to “a result of Covid, injuries and players away with their countries at AFCON.”
🚨 We can confirm we’ve made an application to the Premier League to postpone Sunday’s north London derby.#TOTARS
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 14, 2022
A full statement read:
“We can confirm we have made an application to the Premier League for the postponement of Sunday’s north London derby against Tottenham Hotspur.
We have reluctantly taken this step but we have many players currently unavailable across our squad as a result of Covid, injuries and players away with their countries at AFCON.
We will provide more information as soon as it’s available.”
And though the Gunners could name 14 senior outfield players during their 0-0 draw with Liverpool on Thursday. Cedric was forced off early in proceedings with injury, before Granit Xhaka was sent off, leaving them with 12 senior players.
To make matters worse, reports suggest that all of Calum Chambers, Bukayo Saka and Kieran Tierney also picked up knocks, which negates any potential return of Emile Smith Rowe and Takehiro Tomiyasu.
On top of the pre-existing issues, there were more injury problems for Arsenal during/after last night’s game. Understand Chambers, Saka and Tierney all picked up knocks, along with the injury that forced Cedric off.
— Sam Dean (@SamJDean) January 14, 2022
The Gunners trained at the Emirates Stadium ahead of the tie, as opposed to London Colney, although it is not clear as to whether the training ground has been closed or if it is out of choice.
🚨 Arsenal to train at Emirates this afternoon ahead of Sunday’s #NorthLondonDerby, as #AFC await Premier League decision on request to postpone game. Clubs yet to receive news on outcome of PL board meeting. W/ @gunnerblog for @TheAthleticUK #TOTARS #THFC https://t.co/XYAYn1tpIr
— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) January 15, 2022
The major sticking point, however, is at what point the Premier League decide that they cannot postpone the games due to COVID-19 cases, with currently only Martin Odegaard having tested positive for the Gunners.
However, so far this season, the Premier League have made a rod for their own back in their decisions to postpone games on “COVID and injury” concerns, which Arsenal are hoping will stretch to cover them.
And now, a decision has been made.
Premier League reach decision
And now, much to the dismay of many, the Premier League have indeed confirmed the decision to call off the fixture in the last minutes.
— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) January 15, 2022
This leaves Tottenham with a potentially very congested fixture list, being set to fall four games behind other clubs in the league.
Was it the right decision?
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