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Lucas Torreira injured in friendly at the weekend

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Cardiff City v Arsenal FC - Premier League

All that you hope for out of an international friendly - whether it’s a true international friendly or one of the dumb international friendlies masquerading as matches with purpose known as the Nations League* - is that the players on your favorite team emerge from said friendlies unscathed. Play a few minutes, work up a sweat, make room for a fringe player, and go back to your club ready to contribute without having to expend too much energy.

Well, in Arsenal’s case, that turned out to be a vain hope. Lucas Torreira “suffered a knock” in Uruguay’s friendly win over Mexico at the weekend, and while the extent and severity of said knock is not currently known, Arsenal can’t be happy that a player who was just starting to grow into his role at the club. He was still working his way to full match fitness, and now he’ll be out for at least one game - not the worst thing in the world, sure, but less than ideal for a guy who is still trying to develop a partnership with Granit Xhaka.

*Every time I see anything relating to the Nations League, I think back to the time the MLB All-Star Game ended in a tie, and how because of that MLB decided that ties in exhibition games were bad and that the MLB ASG should count for something. This gave birth to the inane idea that the league of the winner of the ASG would have home field advantage in the World Series, because that’s what happens when you force things that are inherently meaningless to have meaning.