Mikel Arteta says Gabriel Jesus will definitely miss tomorrow’s Champions League clash with Sevilla and Martin Odegaard remains a doubt.
With both players selected by their countries for the upcoming Interlull, Arsenal supporters have been pontificating about the seriousness of their respective injuries with the club coy on the extent of Jesus’ hamstring problem and yet to release any details of Odegaard’s issue.
The Norway international was rested for the 5-0 win over Sheffield United, played 10 minutes of the Carabao Cup defeat to West Ham and was then completely absent from the squad that lost to Newcastle on Saturday.
In his pre-game press conference, Arteta revealed that Odegaard’s current issue is different to the one that forced him to rest the player previously.
“Gabi won’t be fit and with Martin, he’s still uncertain. The rest [Emile Smith Rowe and Thomas Partey], no news so far.
“Martin loves to play for his country and every time that he’s been called up and he was fit he’s been there and he will be there if that’s the case,” added Arteta.
“It’s no relation with what he had and what happened on the day before Newcastle, they are two different topics.”
Odegaard’s form had dipped before he was given a rest. He was the subject of a reckless challenge on his ankle from Mateo Kovacic in the win over Manchester City a month ago and some have speculated whether there have been lingering effects.
On the subject of Jesus’ selection for Brazil, interim national team head coach Fernando Diniz has said that as a big admirer of the striker he wants to check on the player in person. He also cited the fact he didn’t call up Gabriel Martinelli for the previous international break only to watch the player make an unexpected return against Manchester City.
“In the last squad, we hadn’t called up Martinelli from Arsenal. He didn’t report to the CBF in a very complete way, so we didn’t imagine that Martinelli would be ready to play against Venezuela and Uruguay, and he was ready to play before our games,” Diniz told Globo Esporte (translated by Sport Witness).
“Because of this too, we’re going to bring Gabriel in to find out his real condition, because we still have 15 days to go until the games, so we believe he could be fit enough to play, because I like him a lot. We have 24 players on the list, and if anything happens to him we won’t need to change the squad.”
Judging by those comments, you have to assume that he doesn’t trust the feedback he’s getting from the Arsenal medical team. Brazil play Colombia and Argentina – two crunch World Cup qualifiers – on 17 and 22 November respectively.