Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta acknowledges that it is still too soon to determine whether William Saliba will be able to play again this season.
Earlier this week, there was hope that Saliba’s recovery had progressed as he was spotted on an exercise bike during training. However, it seems that such optimism did not last.
Saliba’s absence from the match against Southampton at Emirates Stadium on Friday will rule him out, and there is now a possibility that he may not feature again this season for the Premier League leaders.
Saliba played an important role in Arsenal’s title charge
As the Gunners’ lead over Manchester City is only four points, despite having played one more game, they require all the assistance they can obtain.
“No big news, the picture hasn’t changed from last week. Regarding William, we still need to wait a bit more. He’s not progressing as quick as we hoped,” Arteta said.
“It’s delicate and we want to be very certain when we push him that he is ready to absorb the load and the risk that we will take.
“At the moment it’s not possible to do.”
Asked if Saliba will miss the of the season, Arteta said: “I don’t know. It’s a bit early to do [come to those conclusions].
“Probably next week we will have more certainty. There is some evolution – he’s doing more activity, but he’s not ready yet to throw him on to the pitch at the level our sessions demand to compete in this league.”