Arsenal’s ‘secret weapon’ in 2023 to help Mikel Arteta’s Premier League title bid


Mikel Arteta will be pleased with Arsenal’s start to the season, which has seen them top of the Premier League table, but attention now turns to the league’s return on December 26.

Arsenal’s season has been fantastic so far. Mikel Arteta’s team leads the Premier League table after winning 12 of their 14 games.

The Gunners also advanced to the round of 16 of the Europa League, avoiding a potentially problematic tie with a team relegated from the Champions League. Arsenal’s only setback so far has been a third-round exit from the Carabao Cup, although some may argue that the loss to Brighton was a blessing in disguise.

With the winter break now upon us and the World Cup kicking off on November 20, Arsenal players not heading to Qatar have around 10 days off to recharge their batteries. When they return, the sessions will be geared towards ensuring they are fit for the season to resume on December 26.

As part of the preparations, the team will travel to Dubai early next month for a warm-weather training camp. The Gunners will participate in the Dubai Super Cup and games against Lyon and AC Milan have been booked.

Among the players expected to travel to Dubai is Emile Smith Rowe. The attacking midfielder has had a frustrating season for the Gunners, with injury restricting the 22-year-old to just 47 minutes of action.

He is still on the road to recovery after undergoing surgery at the end of September in an attempt to overcome a nagging groin injury. “In recent months, Emile Smith Rowe has been experiencing groin discomfort, which has limited his training and match appearances,” read a statement posted on the club’s website.

“Following a significant setback in our Premier League match against Manchester United at Old Trafford on September 4, and following further specialist consultation and discussion with our medical team, Emile underwent surgery to repair a damaged tendon in the groin.

“This successful surgery took place in London in recent days and Emile’s rehabilitation program is now underway. We are hopeful that Emile will return to full training in December. Everyone at the club will now support and work hard with Emile to get him back on the pitch as soon as possible.”

As mentioned in the statement, Smith Rowe is expected to return to training in December, which may mean he will play for the Gunners in friendlies against Lyon and AC Milan. This would be a welcome boost for Arteta and Smith Rowe himself, who has been watching from the stands at Emirates Stadium.

“Yes, I go to all the home games and support the lads,” Smith Rowe revealed on the club’s ‘Colney Carpool’ edition hosted by Frimpon. “Away games are pretty tough. It would be fun to sit with the away fans, it would be scenes to be fair, but I’m here. [London Colney] working the days we have games”.

Last year, Smith Rowe was a key player for Arsenal after signing a new contract and being handed the club’s iconic number 10 shirt, previously worn by the likes of Dennis Bergkamp, ​​Jack Wilshere and Mesut Ozil. The Hale End graduate made 37 appearances in the 2021/22 season, scoring 11 goals and assisting two others.

One of Arteta’s main goals over the winter break will be to ensure Smith Rowe gains enough fitness to play a significant role in Arsenal’s second half of the season. Since he has yet to start a game for the Gunners this season, his return will give Arteta and the rest of the team a much-needed boost.


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