The curse of the international break looks to have struck again!
One of the biggest gripes fans have with the international break is the number of mid-season injuries it causes, with many of those fitness issues arising from unappreciated friendly games.
So far, the likes of Hugo Lloris, Memphis Depay, Frenkie de Jong, Jules Kounde, and Ronald Araujo have picked up knocks while on national duty while another key midfielder looks to have joined this list.
That man is none other than Arsenal ace Thomas Partey. Despite just returning from injury, the Ghanian was called up to the Black Stars and was set to feature for his country in their friendly against Brazil.
The former Atletico Madrid player had been out for nearly a month, missing four games before recovering in time for the 3-0 victory over Brentford just before the break, which he started in.
And given the 29-year-old's horrible injury record, Arsenal fans weren't happy to see the midfielder join up with Ghana. Nonetheless, he was named in the lineup for the clash against Brazil only for bad news to strike immediately.
The Emirates Stadium star was replaced by Baba Idrissu in the lineup before the game had even kicked off after "picking up a knock in warm-up", as reported by George Addo Jnr of Joy997fm. And this update was enough to send Gooners into a breakdown as their next Premier League fixture is a highly-anticipated showdown with bitter rivals Tottenham.
Will be waiting to hear from the technical team ,but clearly all wasn't well after warm up.— George Addo Jnr (@addojunr) September 23, 2022
Fortunately, a few positive updates have followed, with Goal's Arsenal correspondent Charles Watts revealing that his withdrawal was merely a precautionary move after "feeling something wrong with his knee in the build-up". The early diagnosis is that he should be available for the upcoming North London Derby on October 1.
Nonetheless, given that Partey has struggled to stay fit for an entire season since joining the Premier League giants, fans will not rest easy until Arteta's names his starting eleven for that crucial clash with Spurs.
So far, Jesus and Co. have lost only one game this entire campaign: a 3-1 defeat against Manchester United at Old Trafford. Thomas was absent in that fixture, with the promising–but inexperienced–Sambi Lokonga deputizing in his place.