Mikel Arteta has suggested Gabriel Martinelli’s injury is not as bad as first feared and is hopeful he will be back sooner rather than later, though Arsenal are still waiting for his scan results.
The Brazilian youngster has been a breath of fresh air since returning to the side after his long lay-off, but he injured his ankle during the warm-up before Saturday’s FA Cup third-round victory over Newcastle.
Martinelli looked in a bad way, breaking down in tears and later watching the game on crutches, but Arteta is quietly optimistic that the injury will not sideline him for a significant period of time.
‘Well we don’t know how bad it is, he’s getting a scan this morning,’ said the Arsenal boss on Monday when asked for an update.
‘It didn’t look good after the game because he was in a lot of pain but yesterday he tested a little bit better.
‘So let’s hope that we have a scan today and it’s not as serious and we can have Gabi back ready soon. But we will know more tomorrow.’
On whether Martinelli could be plagued by injuries in his career, Arteta added: ‘Well he had really bad luck, all three injuries were really different. One was a contact, the other was one that can happen to anyone but you have to be really unlucky.
‘Hopefully – we’re going to scan him today – it’s not that that bad and we can have Gabi back . But I was gutted for him because he was in pain and he was gutted.’
Midfielder Thomas Partey and centre-back Gabriel have missed Arsenal’s recent outings but are in line to return ahead of Thursday’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace.
Arteta continued: ‘Gabi had a training session the day he tested positive, he had very mild symptoms so he’s missed a few weeks of training because he had to be isolated.
‘He’s better now. We expect him to be training with us in the next couple of days and make an assessment whether we can have him or not on Thursday.
‘And Thomas has been in full training for the last four or five days.
‘He’s completely asymptomatic, was a little bit of a rush to try to play him against Newcastle but I think he will be ready for Thursday.’
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