Mikel Arteta provided updates on Gabriel Magalhaes, David Luiz, Willian, and Thomas Partey after Arsenal’s win over Chelsea on Saturday.

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender Gabriel celebrates scoring the equalising goal to make it 1-1 during the English Premier League football match on November 29, 2020. (Photo by CATHERINE IVILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Arsenal won 3-1 against Chelsea in their Boxing Day game this weekend, but they were missing a few first-team players for various reasons.

Thomas Partey remains out with the injury he picked up against Tottenham Hotspur, whilst Gabriel Magalhaes, David Luiz, and Willian were all surprise absentees on the day.

Gabriel Magalhaes

Starting with Gabriel, Mikel Arteta explained that the defender has to isolate after close contact with someone who tested positive for Covid.

“We are not 100 percent [sure how long he’ll miss] but he was in contact with somebody who has tested positive so he has to stay away for a few games,” Arteta said. “It wasn’t with another player in the Premier League. It was someone in his bubble.

Arteta also confirmed Gabriel hasn’t tested positive himself, he’s just been in contact with someone who has.

David Luiz and Willian

As for Luiz and Willian, both missed out with illness, but not necessarily Covid.

“They were having some symptoms, and we have to be really cautious when that happens,” Arteta continued.

“The protocols say that they have to stay away, they have to test negative but still we have to be really careful we don’t pass that into the players until we are 100 percent sure they don’t have it.”

Thomas Partey

On Partey, Arteta didn’t expect the midfielder to return in time to face Brighton or West Bromwich Albion. He’s still making slow and steady progress towards a comeback.

“Not yet,” Arteta responded to questions about a comeback. “He hasn’t started to train with us yet, so he is still a few more days away.”