Over the past few days we’ve seen reports and rumors of players that will miss time based on a new injury, positive COVID-19 results, as well as positive signs from the U23 action on Friday. The club released it’s official team news ahead of their clash with Leeds United. Here’s where the squad stands heading into Sunday:
- Thomas Partey: As expected, his exit from the Villa match at halftime was injury related rather than tactical or fitness related. The club didn’t reveal the extent of his left thigh injury, but it appears to be minor. Ideally he is rested Sunday and the midweek match before a return against Wolves next weekend.
- Mohamed Elneny: Tested positive for COVID-19 while on international duty with Egypt and is listed as asymptomatic. Likely out for the next few matches as he progresses through the isolation process. With Partey out as well that puts Xhaka and Ceballos as favorites to start on Sunday, with Joe Willock and then Maitland-Niles as the next likely midfielders in the depth chart.
- Sead Kolasinac: Tested positive for COVID-19 while on international duty with Bosnia and Herzegovina and is listed as asymptomatic. Likely out for the next few matches as he progresses through the isolation process. His absence mostly impacts the Europa League fixtures, which means we could see Saka or Maitland-Niles fill in at left back.
- Pablo Mari: Back in full training and could be back in for contention sometime during December. After an impressive, but short, debut last season, Mari’s return alongside Gabriel should further strengthen an improved defense this year (despite the Aston Villa result).
- Gabriel Martinelli: Out for the past five months, but he has returned to light training and looks to be on track for a return for the second half of the season. Arsenal’s attack needs a lift and last season Martinelli often provided that.
- Calum Chambers: The positive news from the report is that Calum Chambers has officially been taken off of it. In fact, he played the majority of the match for the U23s in Friday’s 1-0 win. His full return coming in the weeks ahead will be a welcome sight to add backline depth and the fixture congestion continues.
You can catch the Gunners return to action tomorrow in another bottom half of the table clash on NBCSN at 11:30 am ET.