Mikel Arteta will be hoping that this year’s first international break is better than the last one as it approaches.
Remember November 2022, when the Premier League season was suspended for the World Cup? Gabriel Jesus went home earlier than expected after sustaining medial ligament damage to his knee while playing for Brazil.
Think back to that time. He had to have surgery, which kept him from working until the beginning of March.
During the 25-year-old’s absence, credit goes to Arteta and the Gunners for keeping their championship defense on track.
Now that he’s healthy again, it has cemented the conviction that the Premier League trophy may very well be returning to north London for the first time since 2004.
This is because, following a convincing 4-1 victory over Crystal Palace last Sunday, Arsenal entered the March international break eight points ahead of Manchester City at the top of the table, despite having played one more game than Pep Guardiola’s team. Attention is now on the remaining 10 games of the season.
A week from Saturday’s Premier League match against Leeds United, though, will nothing is likely to occur that would bother Arteta. Football, obviously. During the international break, London walks you through the best and worst-case scenarios for the Gunners.
What Arteta expects of the players he has chosen to represent their different nationalities during the coming week has already been stated: Those they In this time, [the international players] really take care of themselves, the Spaniard informed reporters. “We’ll take care of the players who are here with us.
The only crucial game at the moment is against Leeds, therefore they must return with the same attitude and zeal as before. We are aware of it.
That sends a loud and clear message to players like Bukayo Saka, Thomas Partey, Martin Odegaard, Oleksandr Zinchenko, and Granit Xhaka.
Meanwhile, Emile Smith Rowe and Jakub Kiwior in particular should benefit from the international break because they need playing time and are likely to get it with the England U21s and Poland, respectively.
Then, in light of Arteta’s assurance that Ben White, Rob Holding, Gabriel Magalhaes, Gabriel Martinelli, and Reiss will be taken care of
It is encouraging for when Premier League activity returns that senior players Nelson and Jesus were not selected for international duty.
While Takehiro Tomiyasu has been ruled out for the remainder of the season, fans are now eagerly awaiting the return of William Saliba, who suffered a back injury against Sporting CP.
The Frenchman should take advantage of the break to get better before the Leeds encounter.
The ideal situation for Arsenal following the international break is for all 14 players to arrive at London Colney the next week healthy, confident, and prepared to play against Leeds in their first game back, as well as for Saliba to be well enough to play.