August 18, 2022

Mikel Arteta says Takehiro Tomiyasu should return to full training next week but new recruit Fabio Vieira remains sidelined for the time being.

Due to a muscular niggle, Tomiyasu hasn’t featured in any of Arsenal’s pre-season friendlies so far. Given the right-back also missed much of the second half of last season with calf problems it’s certainly a concern heading into the 22/23 campaign.

In last night’s 4-0 win over Chelsea, Ben White deputised ahead of Cedric Soares.

“Tomi is really close to start doing some training sessions,” Arteta said in Florida.

“Hopefully next week and Fabio probably a little bit longer.

“I think he needs another week or so before he starts with the team but he’s been working hard and he’s been really unlucky to start his Arsenal career in this way but again he’s fitting in well.”

Vieira signed for the Gunners in June and was pictured soon after in a protective boot. He sustained a foot injury playing for his country’s under-21s earlier in the summer and it appears we’re playing things cautiously.

As things stand, you’d imagine he won’t be in contention for the first game of the season at Crystal Palace on 5 August.

Kieran Tierney’s fitness continues to be a worry. The Scot hasn’t played any pre-season minutes since a 30-minute cameo against Nurnberg at the start of the month. In his absence, new signing Oleksandr Zinchenko made his debut.

“He was desperate to play and I knew that,” said Arteta of the Ukrainian.

“It was a maximum 45 minutes but you could see straight away he was comfortable. He understands everything that I want, he understands the process and I thought he had a really good game.””

He added: “At the moment Tierney and Tomiyasu are not fit, we have other options, but I think it was good to try different things, to build some relationships in big matches, and I’m happy with the way they played.”

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