This morning, Arsenal delivered their team news in the lead up to their clash with Molde in the Europa League.
The injuries suffered in recent weeks have seemed to stack up. Between illness, minor injuries, and the long term rehab of a Mari and Martinelli, the list is beginning to look a little too long for comfort.
On the bright side, many of them are very short term injuries that often come with muscle fatigue. On the down side, that is the type of injury that clubs are going to have to combat for the remainder of the season given the short offseason and nearly nonexistent preseason.
Many supporters have been waiting for the prognosis on two key players: Bukayo Saka and Thomas Partey.
Right leg impact. Sustained dead leg during the match at Leeds.
Has not travelled to Molde but will be available for Sunday’s match against Wolves.
Left thigh. Sustained strain to left thigh during Aston Villa (h) on November 8. Has not travelled to Molde and progressing rehabilitation.
Saka looks as though the injury is muscular —likely a product of some solid contact, combined with the minutes he has been playing taking a toll—but it’s good to hear he will likely be available for selection come Sunday.
Partey on the other hand seems a bit more worrying. He continues to rehab and nurse a thigh injury that he picked up during the loss to Aston Villa. He won’t be available for Molde, but eyes move to the weekend where Arsenal have a tricky and important matchup with Wolverhampton Wolves.
Thigh injuries can be tricky when it comes to rehab, especially with the amount of muscle that area that needs to be worked back to health and the amount of explosive usage an athlete depends on their thighs to help produce.
Partey will be going on nearly 3 weeks of rehab which makes the international break a well-timed relief, but with the busiest time of the season coming up, having Partey at only half health would seemingly cause a lot of problems.
The team hasn’t officially offered a timeline on his health so we will have to keep an eye on it, but the vagueness may be the worst part. If he is back by the weekend, all is well, but if he misses again and there still isn’t a definitive goal, worry will mount.
As for the rest of the squad, Mohammed Elneny and Sead Kolasinac remain sidelined with positive Covid test and quarantine, while Willian continues to be assessed and is aiming to be available for the weekend as well.
Left calf. Slight calf issue sustained during the match at Leeds.
Has not travelled to Molde. Will continue to be assessed and aiming to be available for Sunday’s match against Wolves.
Finally, while he was never “injured”, David Luiz is back and travelled with the team to Norway after the birth of his daughter. His play certainly comes with a bit of a “double-edged sword” feel to it, but he offers Arsenal more in the attack than the Gunner’s other options, which seems to be something they need. He’s not without his mistakes and errors, nor moments that cause you stomach to leap into your throat and you to piss yourself, but in a team devoid of attack, his ability to play the long ball is an added weapon to spur on the attack.
Arsenal are at an interesting point, not only in their development, but within their season. The games start to come thick and fast and they will need a response. Next up, Molde away.