Arsenal news: Mikel Arteta discloses truth behind William Saliba injury before Leeds clash | Football | Sport
Home » Matches » Arsenal news: Mikel Arteta discloses truth behind William Saliba injury before Leeds clash | Football | Sport
Arsenal news: Mikel Arteta discloses truth behind William Saliba injury before Leeds clash | Football | Sport

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has set the record straight on William Saliba's back injury and declared supporters can be hopeful of seeing him again this season. There were fears the Frenchman's excellent debut Premier League campaign was all but over in midweek when reports speculated that the defender was out for the rest of the season with the issue.

But Arteta is looking at the situation positively and is instead confident Saliba can make his return at some point to help the Gunners during the crucial run in.

"We are very hopeful to still see him before the end of the season. We are managing him, he won't be available tomorrow," Arteta said ahead of the visit of Leeds.

"He is progressing, unfortunately he still has some discomfort. He is not going to be fit for this game."

Saliba sustained the problem during the first half of Arsenal's Europa League knockout defeat to Sporting earlier this month when he was forced off the field of play.

His condition was then monitored closely ahead of the 4-1 home victory over Crystal Palace and an online picture on social media of Saliba posing next to a fan in Tesco sparked optimism the injury wasn't as bad as initially feared.

However, having failed to prove his fitness for the visit of the Eagles, Saliba later withdrew from the France national team squad for Euro 2024 qualifiers with the Netherlands and the Republic of Ireland.

It's clear he is still suffering with the problem and Arsenal's medical staff will be working with the player closely to try and get him up to speed as soon as possible.

Saliba has been one of Arsenal's standout performers this season after shining on loan at Marseille last term.

He has formed part of the Premier League's third-tightest backline this term, building an eye-catching partnership with Gabriel Magalhaes at the heart of Arsenal's defence.

Rob Holding could keep his place alongside the Brazilian when Leeds visit the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

The Englishman turned in a credible performance when filling in for Saliba against Crystal Palace despite an early scare when Wilfried Zaha rattled the post.

New signing Jakub Kiwior is also waiting in reserve for another opening after enduring a shaky debut against Sporting in the 2-2 draw in Portugal.

Arsenal boss Arteta picked up the Premier League Manager of the Month award on Friday after registering four straight top-flight victories in March.

The Gunners successfully swatted aside Everton, Bournemouth, Fulham and Crystal Palace to build on additional victories at Aston Villa and Leicester at the back end of February.

The Premier League leaders still have some tough fixtures to navigate - not least the season-defining trip to Manchester City on April 26 which could decide the title.

Next weekend, Arteta's challengers also travel to Liverpool, who have recorded big home wins against Manchester City and Manchester United already at Anfield this season.

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