Mohamed Elneny will miss the Burnley match on Saturday, but he’s closing in on a return to full training and will be available again very soon.

Arsenal’s Mohamed Elneny celebrates scoring his side’s first goal of the game during the Premier League match at St James Park, Newcastle upon Tyne. Issue date: Sunday, May 2, 2021. Copyright: Molly Darlington

On the last day of training pre-Burnley, Mohamed Elneny was pictured taking part in some training drills with Arsenal, but not the full sessions, as he’s not quite fit yet.

Egypt-based reporter Omar Sobhy writes that Elneny will miss the Burnley match and return to full training next week.

He’s certainly expected to be fit by the time the next international break comes around at the end of the month, with Sobhy writing he’ll be ready to participate in the two matches against Libya.

Elneny appeared to confirm Sobhy’s update by replying to it on Twitter and writing “God bless you, Omar”.

The Egypt national team will certainly be glad to have Elneny back after he missed the last break at the very last second.

He’d been due to join up with his country until he picked up a hamstring problem in a friendly match with Arsenal.

Arsenal also posted a team news update on Thursday morning, writing that Elneny has a hamstring strain, and that he’s aiming to be back in full training next week.

The current timeline looks like making him a long shot for the game against AFC Wimbledon, but you’d expect him to be available after that.

Opportunity for Charlie Patino

Charlie Patino with the Arsenal u23s against Crystal Palace (Photo via David Price on Twitter)
Charlie Patino with the Arsenal u23s against Crystal Palace (Photo via David Price on Twitter)

Charlie Patino could get a chance to take advantage of Elneny’s absence.

Chris Wheatley reports on his YouTube channel that Patino is likely to be in the Arsenal squad for the upcoming League Cup game against AFC Wimbledon at the Emirates Stadium. The midfielder is expected to be on the bench for the game.

Patino is reportedly impressing in his sessions with the Arsenal first team, and he’s certainly doing well with the u23s. He scored an excellent solo goal against Manchester United most recently, winning the ball and beating three players before chipping home.

You always need a bit of luck to get a chance at Arsenal though, and it seems Patino might have that fortune as well. It just so happens Granit Xhaka (suspension) and Elneny will seemingly both be absent for the AFC Wimbledon clash.

Arsenal still have options in midfield, with Thomas Partey, Albert Sambi Lokonga, and Ainsley Maitland-Niles all available. But at least two of those three will probably start both league games on either side of the League Cup fixture.

If they need a rest in between, even if it’s only for part of the cup game, Patino is probably the foremost midfield alternative in the academy right now.

As well as the u23 Manchester United victory, Patino also did well in the recent EFL Trophy match.

Though the Arsenal u21s lost 2-1 to Swindon Town’s first team, Patino put in an excellent display from midfield. He won 18 of his 21 individual duels, earned nine free-kicks, made five tackles, and created two chances despite his deeper role.

With Patino seemingly set to get a chance with the first team, even if it’s only on the bench for now, we seem to be on track for him to receive his new contract in October.

Reports earlier in the summer suggested he’d sign a new Arsenal deal once he turns 18. Per Mertesacker has reportedly earmarked him as a potential future first-team regular.

Charles Watts reported at the time that Patino wasn’t being earmarked for a loan, and he was more likely to follow Bukayo Saka’s career path, joining the u23s before linking up straight with the first team. That seems to be how it’s panning out.