Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah still ‘a few weeks away’
Mikel Arteta has been dealt an injury blow as he confirmed that Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah is still ‘a few weeks away’ from returning.
The Lowdown: Niggling issue
Arsenal reporter for GOAL Charles Watts confirmed on his YouTube channel (via FootballFanCast) that Nketiah had ‘limped off’ in their 4-0 win at home to Everton in the Premier League earlier this month, and that she has been struggling with an injury issue for ‘a while’:
“Eddie Nketiah limped off at the end of the game.
The Latest: ‘A few weeks away’
Speaking to the media in his pre-game press conference ahead of the clash at the Emirates Stadium, Arteta has confirmed that Nketiah is still ‘a few weeks away’ from returning to first-team action, in what he describes as a ‘nasty injury’:
“He’s getting better. He’s still in the boot so still a few weeks away. We need to be patient – it was a nasty injury. It’s a challenge that Eddie’s got ahead of him, but thank God he could have been worse so he’s not in a bad place.”
The Verdict: Big blow
For Nketiah to be ruled out for another few weeks at least is a big blow for Arteta and his team.
Both Gabriel Jesus and Leandro Trossard have only just come back from injuries themselves, and so the Spaniard will want as many options in the forward line available as possible, especially if they get through in the Europa League and continue to fight on two fronts.
Nketiah has not been the most prolific so far this season, but has chipped in while Jesus has been out injured, scoring nine goals and making a further two assists in 32 appearances in total over all competitions (Transfermarkt).
The 23-year-old offers so much more to the side though, with Arteta previously hailing his ‘incredible work-rate‘.
Nonetheless, it is a blow for Arteta to be without Nketiah, as they look to beat Sporting before a potentially tricky London derby against Crystal Palace in the top flight on Sunday afternoon.