Arsenal dealt double blow ahead of trip to Sheffield United with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ‘out with flu’ and Emile Smith Rowe ‘missing with an ankle problem’… but would the Gunners captain have started anyway?
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Emile Smith Rowe are injured for Arsenal
- Both players will miss Sunday’s Premier League game against Sheffield United
- Arsenal have not won any of their previous four games in all competitions
Arsenal have suffered a huge double blow ahead of their Premier League tie against Sheffield United with captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Emile Smith Rowe both ruled out.
However, given the mood music among Arsenal fans and pundits alike this season, one of these absences may be felt far greater than the other.
Aubameyang is out because he is suffering from flu while Smith Rowe has an ankle problem, according to The Athletic.
Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (left) and Emile Smith Rowe (right) are both injured
Smith Rowe is struggling with an ankle problem, while Aubameyang is down with the flu
The Gunners have failed to win their last four matches in all competitions to leave their season hanging by a thread. Most recently Arsenal turned in an abject performance in the Europa League in drawing 1-1 with Slavia Prague.
With the north Londoners sitting tenth in the Premier League table, questions are being raised over the effectiveness of Mikel Arteta’s senior players compared to their academy graduate counterparts.
Aubameyang has been a huge disappointment this season, and was dropped to the substitute’s bench for the draw against Slavia on Thursday, though he came on and assisted Nicolas Pepe’s goal.
Aubameyang was dropped to the substitute’s bench for Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Slavia Prague
The Gabon international has managed just nine goals in 25 Premier League appearances this season.
Smith Rowe, however, has been one of Arteta’s few positives this campaign. The 20-year-old has shown lots of creativity and energy in his 14 league appearances so far, and together with Bukayo Saka is credited with being the driving force behind Arsenal at the moment.
Jamie Carragher recently blasted Arsenal’s senior players as a ‘malignant influence’ who could leave behind a ‘negative legacy’ that affects the likes of Smith Rowe and Saka.
Arteta will hope both Aubameyang and Smith Rowe are fully fit to face Slavia in the reutrn leg on Thursday, but they have a must-win match at Bramall Lane first.
Smith Rowe’s energy and creativity in midfield have been a rare positive for Mikel Arteta
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