Update: Arteta confirms fresh double fitness concern but key Arsenal trio passed fit

By on September 9, 2021

Emile Smith Rowe Arsenal

Arsenal get back to Premier League action when we take on Norwich City at the Emirates on Saturday and we desperately need to pick up a win following a disastrous start to the season.

Unfortunately, it looks like we could be short of options in midfield as Granit Xhaka will start a three-match suspension following his sending off against Manchester City before the international break.

The club have also confirmed on Arsenal.com today that Mohamed Elneny has been ruled out for 2-3 weeks with a hamstring injury so the Egyptian international won’t be involved this weekend.

Not only that, but Emile Smith Rowe was sent home from duty with the England U21 squad due to illness. It’s been confirmed that it’s not related to Covid but Arteta told reporters at his press conference this afternoon that Smith Rowe is still feeling unwell and will have to be assessed over the coming days.

The boss also confirmed a second fresh fitness doubt with the news that Sead Kolasinac is another doubt for the game this weekend with the full-back set to be checked over ahead of Saturday’s game.

Arteta is quoted by Arsenal.com as saying today:

on Smith Rowe and how he is…
He’s carrying an illness. He’s not been feeling good. He could not stay there and the England national team was really positive about letting him go, because everybody could see he wasn’t available. Let’s see how he is in the next couple of days.

on Sead Kolasinac’s fitness…
Again, they will assess him this afternoon on whether he is fit or not. He is one the doubts that we have.

It doesn’t sound encouraging on Smith Rowe but let’s hope he’s passed fit as Albert Sambi Lokonga was also sent home early from international duty after picking up a minor knock while away with Belgium. There hasn’t been an update on his condition yet. He might not have been assessed by the clubs medical team or it may not be serious enough to mention. Let’s pray it’s the latter as we desperately need Sambi available against Norwich.

Partey returns

thomas partey arsenal

The good news for Arsenal is that the club confirmed today that Thomas Partey is available again after recovering from an ankle injury so he should return to make his first appearance of the season.

Gabriel and Ben White are also back in contention after returning to full training recently so we could get a glimpse of Arsenal’s first choice centre-back pairing against Norwich on Saturday afternoon.

The team news update on Arsenal.com said:

Mohamed Elneny
Left hamstring. Mo has suffered a hamstring strain and is aiming to be back in full training in two to three weeks.

Gabriel Magalhaes
Right knee. Gabriel is now back in full training and available for selection.

Thomas Partey
Right ankle. Thomas is now back in full training and available for selection.

Ben White
Covid-19. Ben is now back in full training and available for selection.

The club also revealed in the update that Eddie Nketiah is available again after recovering from an ankle injury. The young striker failed to secure a move away from Arsenal during the window so it will be interesting to see whether he’s involved this weekend.