Injury updates on Saka, Martinelli and Timber

Bukayo Saka comes off against Manchester City

Ahead of our game against Luton Town on Wednesday night, Mikel Arteta provided an update on the fitness of Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Jurrien Timber.

Bukayo returned from injury to feature at Manchester City on Sunday, but came off after 78 minutes of the game after receiving treatment from our physios.

With the games coming thick and fast, Mikel’s pre-match press conference came before our squad had undergone a full training session, and so while he hoped Bukyao would be fine, he admitted he would have to see how to fared on the grass at the Sobha Realty Training Centre first.

When asked about Bukayo, Mikel said: “He's fine. Obviously, we haven't trained, we’ve only recovered and have a short live session today to prepare for the game, and we'll see whether he's in the best condition to start or not.”

Bukayo was replaced by Gabriel Martinelli at the Etihad Stadium, who made his first appearance in around a month after sustaining a gashed foot against Sheffield United, causing him to miss two matches.

When asked if he was fit enough to play a full 90 minutes if necessary, the boss added: “He is because he was available to play against a really tough opponent three days ago. Again, we'll train today and see the state of every player and make the right decision tomorrow.”

Our only other injury concern surrounds Jurrien Timber, who suffered an ACL injury on his Premier League debut against Nottingham Forest in August and has been on the road to recovery ever since.

Mikel provided an update on the Dutch full-back, stating that he is nearing a return to action, potentially at under-21 level, but wants to be fully sure that he’s ready for that step up in intensity before he makes a call.

“He’s doing very well, he’s back training,” Mikel revealed. “He’s not far off, but the thing is that last step, he hasn’t played any minutes so does he need a game with the under-21s, does he need two games?

“We are going to have to see, especially because he’s training with us and we need to see how long that will take him. That last part is tricky and sometimes takes a while. Hopefully, he’ll be back as soon as possible.”

Read every word from Mikel's pre-Luton press conference

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