Arsenal remain hopeful David Luiz can play some part in their run-in towards the end of this season, despite the Brazilian suffering a hamstring injury.
According to the Daily Mail, the north London club’s hopes come after it emerged the muscle injury, suffered during the win over Newcastle United, is not as bad as first feared.
The news will be music to the ears of Mikel Arteta, whose side have been beset by injuries in recent weeks. Kieran Tierney and Alexandre Lacazette have suffered potentially season-ending issues, while club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was struck down by malaria prior to his return in the first leg of the Europa League semi-final against Villarreal.
Arsenal go into the second leg of Thursday’s tie having lost 2-1 last week. Goals from Raul Albiol and Trigueros Munoz gave the Spanish outfit a 2-0 lead before Nicolas Pepe scored a precious away goal from the penalty spot.
TBR View: Luiz news gives hope for potential Europa League final
Over the course of Luiz’s first absence from the side, due to his knee surgery, it was abundantly clear the Gunners lacked the same out ball from defence that the South American can provide.
In his absence, Rob Holding, Gabriel Magalhaes and Pablo Mari were entrusted with playing the same role as the former Chelsea man, however, it proved significantly ineffective.
Luiz possesses a wand of a right foot and has been known for his long-range passing ability for a number of years now. Mixed with his astute defensive ability and long list of experience, the aged centre-back would be a welcome return if Arsenal were to reach their second European final in three years.
Manchester United would most likely be the opponents after their first-leg thumping and, with their habit of playing a high line, Luiz’s passing ability becomes all the more important especially when coupled with the pace of someone like Aubameyang.
However, let’s walk before we start running. First, the Reds must overcome the Yellow Submarine this Thursday. However, should they do just that, Luiz may well be fit to start the Europa League final.