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Fabio Vieira to miss Under-21 European Championships

A blow for the young midfielder.

Arsenal FC v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Fabio Vieira will miss the upcoming U-21 European Championships with an undisclosed injury. The Portuguese FA released a statement that Vieira was not recovering as quickly as expected from an issue that he apparently returned to Portugal with following the conclusion of the Premier League season. There hadn’t been and hasn’t been any reporting from the club or the usual Arsenal reporters about Vieira carrying an injury.

UPDATE: Arsenal report that Vieira is expected back in training in approximately two weeks.

It’s a disappointment for the young midfielder, who was named player of the tournament in 2021, the last time it was held. It’s the latest in a string of setbacks for Vieira, who had a difficult season. He missed almost all of preseason with a foot injury that significantly slowed his integration into the team. He featured regularly in the cup competitions but was limited to three Premier League starts and 19 appearances as a substitute. He showed flashes of on-ball brilliance but also struggled at times with the speed and physicality of the Premier League.

It’s easy to see why Mikel Arteta and Arsenal are so high on Vieira. His comps are impressive and he has the potential to be a special, difference-making player.

This season is an important one for him (and Emile Smith Rowe, who is in a similar boat). Both are coming off a more-or-less lost season dues to injuries. They have the talent to carve out a bigger role at Arsenal, but they need to step up their performances and earn additional playing time. It won’t simply be given to them. Should they not measure up, there is a good chance they’ll be in the shop window come next summer.

Vieira missing out on the U21 Euros is unfortunate, but it could prove a blessing in disguise. Hopefully the time off will allow him to be fully healthy whenever he’s scheduled to report to Arsenal preseason, likely sometime in the next two or three weeks, probably a bit earlier now that he doesn’t have international matches on his schedule. It’s important that he’s able to hit the ground running, show everyone why Arsenal paid £30M for him last summer, and establish himself as part of Mikel Arteta’s setup / plan for next season.