Arsenal training footage reveals Gabriel replacement for Man City clash amid injury concerns

Latest Arsenal news with Mikel Arteta hoping for a triple injury boost ahead of the Premier League clash against Manchester City

Takehiro Tomiyasu

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is facing a triple injury dilemma ahead of the huge Premier League title clash against Manchester City. Over the international break, Arteta saw Gabriel Magalhaes and Bukayo Saka return early to London Colney and join Gabriel Martinelli as an injury doubt for the fixture at Etihad Stadium.

During the 6-0 win over Sheffield United earlier this month, Martinelli limped off injured with a nasty cut on his foot and he has not featured since. With Saka and Gabriel allowed time to recover from their respective injuries, the hope was the duo would therefore be passed fit to play this weekend, however that may not be the case.

“Yeah there is a chance,” Arteta said when asked if Saka, Martinelli and Gabriel could feature. “They haven’t trained. Tomorrow [Saturday] we have another session, so there is a chance they can be available.” Pep Guardiola is also dealing with a number of injuries, however he confirmed that both Kyle Walker and John Stones would miss the game.

Saka was absent for the reverse fixture earlier in the season when the Gunners beat their title rivals, however Arteta will be hoping he can make the away game. Throughout the week, going off the footage from training, Arteta’s comments have been proven right with none of the three injury doubts spotted.

And that continued with the video uploaded to Arsenal’s official website just over 24 hours before Arsenal kick off against the reigning champions. Emile Smith Rowe, Reiss Nelson and Fabio Vieira were among the attackers looking sharp during the small-sided game while Takehiro Tomiyasu also made a surprising impression.

The Japan international, after scoring his first goal for the club, has continued in that vein with a delightful header in training. Gabriel has frequently stepped up in the attacking third from set-pieces this season and Tomiyasu could be looking to replicate that if he’s given the nod in defence

Gabriel being absent would likely result in Ben White moving into the centre of defence with Tomiyasu coming in at right-back as a result. Leandro Trossard continuing on the left is an expected outcome especially if Martinelli cannot return, meanwhile an obvious replacement for Saka is unclear.

Vieira has previously replaced Saka in games, while Jesus has also been used out wide in the midst of attacking injury absences. Nelson is another option, however Arteta has rarely utilised the Englishman this season despite him signing a new contract in the summer.

Arteta has previously been coy on giving clear injury updates and Arsenal fans will certainly be hoping that is the case with Saka, Gabriel and Martinelli, despite the trio missing training.

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