Arsenal suffer Emile Smith Rowe injury setback ahead of Man City FA Cup tie

Emile Smith Rowe will miss tonight’s FA Cup fourth round tie against Manchester City after suffering a minor setback in training.

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The 22-year-old has endured a frustrating season and been restricted to just seven substitute appearances in all competitions.

Having lost his place to Gabriel Martinelli at the start of the campaign, Smith Rowe was forced to undergo groin surgery after he aggravated an existing groin problem during the warm down that followed September’s defeat at Old Trafford.

Smith Rowe missed the World Cup as a result but made his eagerly anticipated comeback against Oxford United earlier this month and made a subsequent substitute appearance against Tottenham at fortnight ago.

According The Evening Standard, the versatile forward’s latest setback is not connected to his previous injury and he has been left behind in London as a precaution.

The Gunners will also be without Mohamed Elneny who it is feared could miss the rest of the season with a knee injury.

It remains to be seen to what extent, if at all, Arteta and Pep Guardiola will shuffle their respective packs but the Arsenal boss knows he will be facing the ‘best team in the world’ regardless of who his mentor selects.

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‘It’s a big match, and a big test for us against in my opinion the best football team in the world,’ he said.

‘I’m looking forward to it because it will tell us a lot about where we are.

‘I think there are going to be two very very different games [between the FA Cup and league matches], and to put similarities into them is very unreal.

‘Maybe because of the players on the pitch, but as well the context is extremely different.

‘Let’s see – obviously it is important to win and play well.

‘That gives you more momentum, more confidence and prepares you better for the next match, and that’s our focus on Friday.’

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