Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Arsenal Defender Per Mertesacker Faces a 5-Month Injury Layoff

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker could be out for up to five months after picking up a knee injury, Sky Sports writes.

Mertesacker, 31, has been left out of the squad’s pre-season tour of the United States as a result of the problem that occurred during Friday night’s friendly against Ligue 1 side RCLens.

The German centre-back was top in line to be named new club captain at the Emirates following Mikel Arteta’s retirement and eventual departure to Manchester City to serve on Pep Guardiola’s coaching crew.

This further complicates the injury woes for Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger ahead of the new season with Brazil centre-back Gabriel Paulista struggling with tonsillitis and Laurent Koscielny allowed an extended break after playing in the final of Euro 2016 with France.

21-year-old Calum Chambers is the only fit senior central defender at the Emirates, although new signing Rob Holding could fill the vacant position as the team tours the US.

The Gunners take on an MLS All-Star team on Friday and round off their tour against Chivas on Monday.

Arsenal, who finished runners-up to surprise champions Leicester City last term, begin the 2016/17 season with a blockbuster clash against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool on August 14.

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