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Arteta plays down Bukayo Saka injury fears

Arsenal star had to be substituted in the Champions League against Sevilla. However, Arteta said Saka injury is not serious.

Mikel Arteta played down concerns over Bukayo Saka‘s fitness after he was forced off during Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Sevilla in the Champions League. Saka scored in the match. Despite having a slight injury concern, Arteta suggested that he would be fine for Arsenal’s match against Burnley. Saka injury does not appear to be serious.

He said on Saka injury: “At the end he wasn’t comfortable to carry on. Hopefully it’s not too much. But I’m really pleased with his performance.

“I think he’s getting used to it being kicked. I don’t think that’s going to change, especially with the way he plays and the way he attracts players. So he better get used to it because I don’t think it’s going to change.

“It was just a kick and I was told by the physios on the radio he wasn’t happy to continue. So he will have some discomfort but hopefully I am going to assume he will be OK.”

After the controversy surrounding last weekend’s loss to Newcastle, Arsenal had a much-needed routine victory against Sevilla in the Champions League. Despite the absence of several key players due to injuries, Leandro Trossard and Bukayo Saka stepped up.

Trossard broke the deadlock in the 29th minute, finishing off a slick move initiated by a brilliant pass from Jorginho to Saka. Saka himself secured the win with a smart finish in the 64th minute, making it a comfortable night for Arsenal in the Champions League. Arsenal is likely to continue their Champions League journey in 2024. They have a four-point lead at the top of Group B.

Arteta: Saka injury is not serious

Arteta added: “I think it was more of the really good things that we did against Newcastle. We didn’t need a response because the team performed extraordinarily well against a team that are really difficult to play against.

“Today it needed other requirements, tactically we needed something else. We implemented what we wanted really, really well, so I’m really happy with the last two performances.”

On top of worries over Saka injury, Takehiro Tomiyasu was also taken off during the interval.

“He had some discomfort in the first half,” Arteta said of the defender.

“We didn’t want to take any risks because he’s played a lot of minutes. With Alex (Oleksandr Zinchenko) on the bench ready to come in, I think it was the right decision.”

On Odegaard (hip) and Nketiah (ankle), Arteta added: “They are racing against the clock to be fit.

“They tried their best to be here today with us, it wasn’t possible and we have another 48 hours before we play Burnley. We’ll try again and see because we need players at the moment.”

Alex Lundy
Alex Lundy
A lifelong football fan, Alex loves to dabble in its history, especially FIFA World Cup. But his love for sports doesn't end at football since he loves watching NBA and Formula1 too. Reading novels and watching classic films takes the rest of his time.
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