Arsenal could be without four key players for Sunday’s match against Everton after they missed first-team training on Wednesday. It comes ahead of the Gunners’ vital final fixture, which may see them confirm Champions League qualifying.
Given Mikel Arteta’s recent performance, the challenge will be difficult. Following a setback in the derby and a subsequent defeat against Newcastle, his team’s four-point lead over North London rivals Tottenham was shattered.
The Spaniard is now in fifth place, two points behind fourth and with a goal difference of 15. With Spurs taking on Norwich, the Gunners will be praying that their local rivals fall to defeat while they pick up a win.
The manager has pushed his players to put the previous two defeats behind them, saying, “We have to swallow everything, digest everything, and tomorrow is another day.” We still have five days to prepare for that match, which we are aware of.”
Arteta may have to make some changes ahead of the match against the Toffees, who may need to find their own result to keep their Premier League position, due to a number of injury worries. Rob Holding has already been ruled out due to suspension, while Kierney Tierney and Thomas Partey have been sidelined due to long-term injuries.
According to Sky Sports through Football Daily, four key players were absent from Wednesday’s pre-game training session. Ben White, Gabriel Magalhaes, Takehiro Tomiyasu, and Emile Smith Rowe were the players in question.
While there may be plenty of replacement possibilities for the last four, there will be concerns about how the back four will appear. Nuno Tavares and Cedric Soares will be the only fit defenders available if those three are unavailable, along with the guarantee of Holding.
However, with only a few days until the fixture, it could be a precautionary measure, similar to the late fitness checks with White and Gabriel ahead of Newcastle. Arteta will be eager to get them fit in time, as he hopes to finish the season on a high in front of his home crowd.