Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Arteta provides squad update ahead of Forest trip

Arsenal will travel to Nottingham Forest without Oleksandr Zinchenko, William Saliba or Gabriel Martinelli as we look for a win that will prolong the title race for at least another day.

Manchester City will win the Premier League for a third successive year if the Gunners fail to beat Forest on Saturday evening and even if Mikel Arteta’s players do get the three points, the Blues will be crowned on Sunday if they beat Chelsea at the Etihad.

Were Arsenal completely out of the running, wholesale changes might be expected. As it is, we’re likely to field as strong a lineup as possible. Arteta will still have to cope without five stars.

Zinchenko is ruled out with a calf injury, Saliba, who hasn’t played since March, has been spotted in Cameroon (presumably with permission from the club) while Martinelli is in a protective boot having had his ankle scythed off by Moises Caicedo in Sunday’s defeat to Brighton. Takehiro Tomiyasu and Mo Elneny continue their rehab from knee operations.

“They are both out for the rest of the season,” said Arteta when asked about Zinchenko and Martinelli.

“Gabi is a pretty nasty injury. We need to assess next week how long he will be out for, but he will be out for at least weeks. With Alex, he has a calf issue and he won’t be able to play the next few games.”

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Man Manny

We must acknowledge this season has been a huge success, in spite of the ultimate failure to win the league after leading for such a long time – an achievement I can boldly say no Arsenal fan contemplated at the beginning of the season.
Focus should now turn to ensuring we are not going into the CL to make up the numbers. A quarter/Semi final berth would be good alongside another title race. The summer dealings, like Arteta said, therefore must be decisive and qualitative.


After the capitulation against Southampton and the resignation against Brighton, we should just rotate the whole side, it’s a free hit.

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