Arsenal will assess Ben White and Bukayo Saka this afternoon before making a final decision on their participation in tomorrow’s huge North London derby.
White has missed the last two games with a hamstring problem and there are concerns the issue may be more serious than Mikel Arteta is letting on. The Spaniard was optimistic about the defender’s recovery before and after the win against Leeds United but was a little more guarded today.
Arteta asserted that Saka was ‘fine’ on Sunday and it’s expected he will make the trip up the Seven Sisters Road.
Asked for a squad update when he faced the press on Wednesday, the manager said:
“With Thomas [Partey], he’s of course still out, Kieran [Tierney] is still out and with Ben, it’s still a doubt.
“We have to assess him and see how he’s feeling which is much better and Bukayo, the same.”
Pressed for further details on the chances of White and Saka playing on Thursday, he continued:
“It’s very difficult to rate with injuries, it’s just how they feel today and that’s the last day we can assess them and try to get their feeling, basically.”
Arsenal know that a win against Sp*rs will secure at least fourth spot in the Premier League standings and with it the prize of Champions League qualification.
Arteta made no bones about how much he’s looking forward to the match.
“It’s the most exciting one, probably,” he said when asked if the game was the biggest of his tenure.
“We had other ones, where we faced Chelsea in the FA Cup and Liverpool in the Community Shield was the same. When you have the opportunity to achieve one of your objectives in the season, you just can’t wait to play the game.”