Granit Xhaka is expected to be missing until at least December after suffering a knee injury in the weekend’s win over Tottenham, and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was quizzed about his absence today.
The boss was speaking to the press ahead of his side’s clash with Brighton this weekend, where he will be hoping to secure his fourth consecutive win in the division.
He will have to do so without one of his leaders in Granit Xhaka, who has suffered an injury which is expected to keep him out for around three months.
“Obviously, it’s really bad news personally for Granit” Arteta said in his pre-match press conference. “He’s had a couple of incidents already this season with Covid, with suspension and now with long-term injury. He’s a strong man and he will use this time to focus on other things and I’m sure he will be back in the right place when he’s back. Obviously, he’s a big player for us, someone who is really important, and he will be missed. Other players have to step in.”
The manager then added that while he is a ‘big loss’ to the first-team, we will be working to help him recover from what is his first big injury as a professional, insisting he has ‘other really good players’ who will fill in during his absence.
“It is a big, big loss and we will lose him for a while but we will try to keep him as close as possible to the team. He will evolve and develop in other areas. This is the first big injury he has had, we are here to help him and I am sure we will find other ways around the team because we have other really good players who will step in and do the job.”
We have plenty of options to cover for his absence, with Martin Odegaard, Sambi Lokonga, Mo Elneny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles as alternatives for the role, while Charlie Patino is one we would all love to see earn a role in the side also.