Mikel Arteta says he’s pleased Calum Chambers is close to a return and praised the defender for his attitude throughout a long and gruelling rehabilitation process.
The 25-year-old ruptured the ACL in his left knee in last December’s defeat to Chelsea and was making good headway with his recovery when Covid-19 restrictions added a layer of complexity to his day-to-day contact with the medical team.
Unable to use the facilities at London Colney during lockdown, he had to rely on daily Zoom calls with the club’s specialists who talked him through rehab sessions he could conduct on gym equipment sent to his home.
More recently, Calum has been back on the pitch with the under-23s and he’s now expected to challenge for playing time in the coming weeks.
“He’s evolving really well,” reported Arteta when asked for an update in his pre-Rapid Vienna press conference.
“He’s played some minutes with the under-23s in recent weeks. It’s been a long injury and you know that injuries like that take a long time to get your body, your biomechanics completely natural to compete. But I will say that now he’s very close to returning to play.”
Having been a former teammate of Chambers towards the end of his playing career at Arsenal, Arteta was well-acquainted with the former Southampton star when he rejoined the club as head coach last year. Even though his injury came just days after his appointment, the boss was impressed by the progress he’d seen in the defender’s game.
“He got injured against Chelsea if I remember correctly and he was starting the game.
“He was having a really good time. I think his performances were much more stable, he was growing in confidence, he matured a lot from his spells on loan at different clubs as well.
“Then he’s also a fantastic character. He went through the injury in an incredible way, everyone that’s involved with him during the rehab, during training, says incredible things about him.
“He’s such a nice guy, a great character to have around, and is a player we can utilise in different positions which is really helpful as well for any squad. We want to have him back and I think he’s very close.”
Given the number of centre-backs at our disposal, you wouldn’t be surprised if Chambers was sent out on loan in January to get game time and to build confidence. We know from experience that players rarely enjoy a smooth return after such a serious injury so he may yet have a few bumps in the road ahead. All the same, it’s great to see him back.
Good news. Chambers was certainly playing better prior to his injury but, overall, he has been disappointing and hasn’t lived up to the hype/expectation around his transfer many seasons ago now. However, here’s a great opportunity to show what he can do at a time when the team is clearly in trouble in the PL and when we need solidity in defence (and in midfield, and in attack – all round, really – that’s how much trouble we’re in). So let’s hope he can ride to the rescue.
With Chambers ability to play RB, he might be useful on the right side of three at the back and do what Tierney does on the left. I wouldn’t be surprised if Arteta reverts to this system given our recent catastrophes.
Still not quite sure what we’ve got in Chambers which is mental given that we’ve had him six seasons. Another player who we bought without truly having a solid plan for and he’s suffered as a result.
Here’s hoping he’ll blossom into a brilliant CB… No breath is being held.
Yes, we can’t write him off – and I wouldn’t want to. His transfer was a little “odd” in that Wenger bought him as a very promising youngster (for a big fee in those days) but, if memory serves threw him in at the deep end, CL etc. He didn’t really do very well overall which was hardly surprising and then there were the all too usual loans. I remember he played well at Fulham, but not well enough for them to make any bid though. So, all in all, he’s had a pretty disruptive time of it. I’m not… Read more »
I remember his introduction a bit differently – I recall it paralleling Gabriel’s introduction this season… was not expected to be an immediate starter, but thrown right in due to injuries, etc. and performed admirably.
I think it was after like a month or more that there started to be major issues.
Honestly, though, I feel like this has been the story with a bunch of centerbacks (Mustafi for instance) so perhaps I am misremembering Chambers’s specific situation
Oh wait.. What.. He was Fulham player of season when he goes on loat at them..
Its emery who want to keep him next season at arsenal
I don’t understand the loan idea…with so many players getting injured it would be just our luck to send him on loan and then a couple of other defenders get injured…also as Arteta says he can play in different positions.
We’ve got Mustafi, Holding, Luiz and Gabriel currently fit and in the match squad. No reason at all to loan Chambers out. He shouldn’t be playing every game at this point of his rehab and he would be a welcome rotation option for the 4 mentioned. Especially with Holding and Luiz having fitness troubles of their own
Not sure Luiz is ‘fit’ after his head bang the other day. I reckon he’ll be given a chance to rest for a week to 10 days (2-3-4 games) as a precaution. Mustafi still looking to get back to full fitness after a lay-off. Leaving Holding and Gabriel. I’m with SharpasFc. Within the confines of The Club Chambers can continue his properly mapped recovery. Loaning him out, he’ll be pitched straight in without any consideration by some result-obsessed manager and get injured again almost immediately. At least within AFC, Chambers will get 10 minutes here, 20 minutes there as a… Read more »
Yeah absolutely. Loanee clubs have no incentive to look after our players. What does it matter to them if he plays every game and screws some more ligaments, or wastes the entire time on the bench? They might not get a loan from us again, but that’s it And besides, he’s already had one loan too many. He was pretty firmly established in our starting xi at CB at the time we sent him on loan to Fulham, who then proceeded to play him in midfield. Made zero sense I’d back him to get back in our starting xi again… Read more »
He is homegrown as well. We are already short on that front and haven’t been able to register a full 25 member squad due to that reason.
It would be counter productive to send him on loan, unless we are adding any further homegrown players to the squad.
Especially if we dump Papa (or keep him unregistered) and Mustafi in January, then he’ll be good to have around as an option, but we will be able to afford to ease him back in.
I suppose this all also depends on what we do with Saliba…
In Chambers case I can understand a loan ..to get him into fitness after such an injury.
Also we could literally field a team of CB’s ,we are 2 short but could of course promote from academy , but according to Athletic we are on the lookout in January for a rightsized CB so only one promotion spot open.. Hmm but if we are a bit outlandish and play an actual goalie there are no spots open ..
At this point, it seems clear that he’s not going to be a top level CB. And we’re pretty well-stacked there already.
But that doesn’t mean he has zero value. For one, he’s British, so helps with those rules. Two, he can also play RB in an emergency. Three, he can play CDM…this is where I’d actually like to see him. That would allow Partey to be more box2box and help the attack.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but if I remember correctly he was outstanding at CB before his injury.
That is exactly right – his situation mirrored Holding’s so closely… both were playing exceptionally well for a run of game before ending up with terrible knee injuries
Under Arteta, before his injury, Chambers was our standout defender
Except he is an outstanding CB and with the exception of Gabriel and perhaps Holding, is the best we have.
I would like to see him given a few games in CM , he has good passing range and is quick on the turn. I think he is more press resistant than the two clowns who trundled around the midfield on Sunday night.
Clowns on sunday night, heroes when they won us the FA cup a couple of months ago.. ye.. some peoples view on things change quickly and weirdly sometimes eh?
He could anchor the base of midfield like he did for Fulham. He played incredibly well in that position. Might be worth a try, nothing else is working in midfield at the moment.
Underrated player. Can’t think of him having too many howlers and has always been very tidy in possession. Did well initially at CB with BFG then had that game against Montero at RB which seems to have tainted perception of him as a player. Montero could skin the best of them to be fair and he was a young player then. I don’t think he’s been a bad signing, more unlucky with injuries, particularly the last one. We need a reinforcement at CM so surely worth keeping around. I can’t help but notice Torreira is contributing well for Atleti and… Read more »
I feel very sad letting Torreira leave as I think he was a fine DM and would have been a good partner for Partey. I support Arteta but letting him leave together with Martinez are 2 bad mistakes in my opinion
This is why we’re fail, total wrong mentality if he thinks chambers is good enough for my arsenal, he should of been sold ages a go, keeps on playing his love child bellerin, another one that aint good enough, and then there’s xhaka ,don’t even get of stared on him
For fucks sake don’t loan him out. He’s a lovely player in the DM role and I can think of a couple of players he cud replace.
We have enough CBs .
Other than Partey , we are shocking in midfield.