Arteta admits this player only had 1 training session before Manchester United win

Manchester United's English striker Marcus Rashford (L) is hurt in this challenge with Arsenal's English defender Rob Holding (R) on November 1, 2020. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Manchester United's English striker Marcus Rashford (L) is hurt in this challenge with Arsenal's English defender Rob Holding (R) on November 1, 2020. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Mikel Arteta says Rob Holding only took part in one training session before the trip to Manchester on Sunday, following his injury.

Manchester United's English striker Marcus Rashford (L) vies with Arsenal's English defender Rob Holding (R) on November 1, 2020. (Photo by PHIL NOBLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Manchester United’s English striker Marcus Rashford (L) vies with Arsenal’s English defender Rob Holding (R) on November 1, 2020. (Photo by PHIL NOBLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Ahead of Arsenal’s game against Manchester United, it looked very unlikely Rob Holding would be available to feature. In fact, we made the mistake of ruling him out, based on the official info from Arsenal that he’d rejoin training after the weekend.

Even those working for the club might have believed that was the case, as Mikel Arteta reveals Holding didn’t return to full training until the final session before the match.

“I think he had one session [before the game],” Arteta said. “We didn’t expect him to be back so quickly, to be fair.

“Thanks to the medical staff for the work that they’ve done, but that’s the culture that we’re trying to create. Rob has this determination and he’s willing all the time to play and improve and work hard.

“He put himself on the line when we needed him and it was an incredible performance.”

In the end, Holding played the full 90 minutes, even remaining on the pitch when he could’ve come off for Shkodran Mustafi. Arteta was trying to see out the result and preferred to substitute a forward instead, leaving Holding to push through his cramp.

The centre-back did just that, remaining alert until the final minute to secure the three points. It was a monumental effort, and you’d hope he’ll now get a full rest on Thursday to prepare for another game at the weekend.