Kim Little is the latest casualty for the Arsenal Women and with the team flying and on a high, there is a small risk that the squad runs out of steam later in the season.
As per previous updates, Tabea Kemme is on her way back and should be playing this autumn, i.e. before the 21st of December. Victoria Schnaderbeck and Danielle Carter have long-term injuries and won’t be back for a while.
Kim Little is out for up to ten weeks. It leaves the club with fourteen senior players available and youngster Ava Kuyken, who is 17 and a regular in the squad.
If we count the full ten weeks, Kim would be out until Christmas and would miss the following games: Reading (H), Bristol (A), Birmingham (H), Everton (A), Brighton (H), Man City (A), Charlton (H) CC, Millwall (A) CC. A total of eight games including tough ones against Champions League contenders Reading, Birmingham and Manchester City.
So right now, the following players are available to Joe Montemurro:
Goalkeepers (2) Pauline Peyraud-Magnin, Sari Van Veenendaal
Defenders (6) Lisa Evans, Jessica Samuelsson, Leah Williamson, Dominique Bloodworth, Louise Quinn, Emma Mitchell
Midfielders (4) Lia Waelti, Jordan Nobbs, Danielle Van De Donk, Ava Kuyken
Forwards (3) Bethany Mead, Anna Miedema, Katie McCabe
It’s quite clear that there will be limited rotation and certainly all the senior players will get a start during this ten-week period.
Hopefully, Tabea Kemme can be added to the squad and get a few sub appearances soon. You would also hope that Ava Kuyken will get a start either against Millwall or Charlton in the Continental Cup.
You certainly wonder if the club will look for one or two players during the January transfer window as promotion for one of the Academy players is unlikely. Those girls are 16 to 18 years old and not ready for first team football.