Arsenal monitoring Gabriel Magalhaes injury issue as crucial player nears return


Mikel Arteta has admitted that Arsenal will have to be "aware" of an issue Gabriel Magalhaes picked up over the international break across their next few matches. The 25-year-old made his full Brazil debut as they kicked off their World Cup qualifying campaign against Bolivia. He sparked concerns however, after being spotted holding an ice pack on his thigh after being taken off at around the 85th minute.

Reports have suggested that scans did not show any serious signs of injury however. The former Lille man was also able to play the entirety of Brazil's 1-0 victory over Peru just four days later.

To add to that Gabriel was involved as Arsenal trained on Friday at London Colney ahead of their Premier League clash with Everton this weekend. Still though, Arteta said that he and his staff will be keeping a keen eye on how the Brazilian develops over the next few weeks.

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‘We have good contact with the national teams," he said in his pre-match press conference. "Gabby had a little issue but he managed to play the second game, so it’s something obviously for the next sequence of matches we have to be aware."

Arsenal can ill-afford to lose Gabriel for any period of time as they prepare to begin their Champions League and Carabao Cup campaigns across the coming weeks. The Gunners will play seven matches across the next four weeks and with Jurrien Timber and Thomas Partey both out for some time, they are thin on the ground defensively.

They are likely to be bolstered elsewhere on the pitch by the return of Mohamed Elneny however. The Egyptian has been absent since picking up a serious knee injury in a training session in January. Arteta revealed that he is back training after a minor setback however, and heralded his importance to the squad.

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"He has been training with us, he had a little niggle in his hamstring a few weeks ago and he is back in training now," Arteta said of the 31-year-old. "Obviously it’s been a long-term injury, the latter stages of that rehab right now and then it’s about building momentum and game time with him.

"I always said he’s our glue player, he’s the one that brings everybody together, sticks everybody together, he’s a really important player for me in the squad and I am delighted to have him."

Sunday's trip to Everton is likely to come too soon for Elneny. He is however, hopeful of making a return to the matchday squad soon. Elsewhere Bukayo Saka is expected to be available for Sunday's trip to Goodison Park, despite picking up a small knock while on England duty.

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