Mikel Arteta says Takehiro Tomiyasu is fit and available for selection as Arsenal gear up for their final match of 2022 at Brighton and Hove Albion.
The manager also delivered a positive update on Emile Smith Rowe who is also close to a return having been sidelined since September following groing surgery.
Tomiyasu went to the World Cup nursing a muscular problem but managed to play 186 minutes as Japan went out at the last 16 stage on penalties to Croatia. He flew straight to Dubai afterwards to join up with the Gunners but has been eased back to action.
“He’s getting closer and closer [to full fitness]. He’s training with us, so he’s available,” said Arteta about the full-back.
Tomiyasu has played the majority of his football this season covering at left-back so it remains to be seen whether he gets the nod ahead of Kieran Tierney and Oleksandr Zinchenko at the Amex Stadium. We suspect he’ll be on the bench.
On Smith Rowe, Arteta added: “He has made some big steps in the last week or so, took part in a few training sessions lately and is looking good.”
As far as we’re aware there are no other injuries concerns aside from the long-term absence of Gabriel Jesus and Reiss Nelson who is sidelined for a few weeks.