A 2-2 draw in the North London Derby saw Arsenal maintain their unbeaten start to the season, but questions still linger while fans sweat on Declan Rice’s fitness.
At half-time, Mikel Arteta was forced to make adjustments, most notably due to an injury to Declan Rice, who was replaced by Jorginho who went on to have a nightmare game, gifting the ball to Spurs for their second equaliser.
According to Sky Sports during the game, Rice had strapping on his left calf as he watched on from the bench in the second half.
After the game, Mikel Arteta spoke to the media and gave an update and it seems it was his back, not his calf that caused the problem.
“Declan is not feeling good, he felt something in his back and could not carry on, and Fabio was a tactical decision,” Arteta said about his half-time substitutions.
In his press conference, Arteta told reporters, “He had some discomfort in his back, and he was telling us during the first half that he wasn’t comfortable. When we assessed him at half-time, he couldn’t continue, so we had to change him.”
Asked if Rice was facing a lengthy spell out, Arteta replied, “Hopefully not, but we have to assess him. It’s strange that a player like him asks to come off, because he wasn’t uncomfortable. Hopefully not, but we’ll see.”
So, Rice was and wasn’t uncomfortable?
Leandro Trossard also missed the game after picking up a muscular injury. There have been no updates on his issue at the time of writing.
About the injuries Arsenal have suffered, Arteta said, “It was already a test today because we missed five big players, but it’s what we have.
“We need to give trust and opportunities to the other ones – we have a game every three days and that’s the level we have to show, so let’s go for it.”