Mikel Arteta delivers worrying Fabio Vieira injury update after Arsenal star misses training


Mikel Arteta has delivered an update on Fabio Vieira after the Arsenal midfielder missed training ahead of Wednesday night's crucial UEFA Champions League fixture against RC Lens.

The 23-year-old missed the Gunners' 1-0 win over Brentford at the weekend as he served the first of a three-match suspension following his red card against Burnley before the international break. However, as that only applies in the Premier League, he had been cleared to make a return for the European clash.

And with Arteta permitted to name a starting XI and up to 12 substitutes against Lens, there was an expectation that Vieira would be included on the bench - at the very least - as the north London outfit go in search of the win to guarantee top spot and qualification for the knockout phase.

But the playmaker's availability was thrown into doubt following today's training session as whilst the likes of Bukayo Saka, Declan Rice, Leandro Trossard, Eddie Nketiah, Jakub Kiwior and William Saliba took part, football.london spotted that Vieira was a notable absentee.

Now, it was unclear as to why the 23-year-old was absent but Arteta has since offered an explanation by revealing the attacking midfielder has undergone an operation on his groin and isn't expected to feature again in 2023.

"Yeah we’ve got a problem with him," the Arsenal manager said in the pre-match press conference. "He’s been having some discomfort. We sent him to see a specialist and the advice was to have an operation in his groin. He did that yesterday. We don’t expect him back this side of the winter break."

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Furthermore, when the Gunners trained on Tuesday afternoon, initially there was no sign of Ben White either thus sparking fears he suffered a recurrence of the muscle problem that caused him to miss the 3-1 win over Burnley before the international break a fortnight ago.

Of course, the defender was passed fit for the trip to Brentford and he did walk out with strength and conditioning coach Sam Wilson soon afterwards. As reported by football.london, White trained on his own but is expected to be available.

"He trained the day before the Brentford game and was feeling good I think he’ll be available for this game," Arteta added. "That’s very good news for us."

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Mikel Arteta celebrates Arsenal's recent Premier League victory over Manchester City

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