Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has confirmed that Pablo Mari suffered a calf injury in training and expects the Gunners defender to miss several matches.
The North Londoners announced prior to Thursday night’s Premier League draw with Crystal Palace that the Spaniard was being rested as a precaution due to “tightness in his calf”.
However, Arteta said after the game that Mari’s issue was more serious than previously thought and was likely to keep the centre-back sidelined for a bit longer.
“He had a calf injury in training [on Wednesday],” Arteta told the Arsenal media team. “I think he will miss a few matches.
“He’s another one we will lose but we’ve got Gabi [Magalhaes] back after covid, which is good news, we’ve got Thomas [Partey] back as well. Let’s focus on the positives.”
Mari joined Arsenal from Brazilian club Flamengo in January, initially on loan before signing permanently in June in a reported £14million deal.
The 27-year-old penned a long-term contract at the Emirates Stadium, apparently running until 2024 and worth £85,000-a-week.
Mari was sadly out of action long-term after suffering an ankle ligament sprain in June but returned to first-team action in December, with six appearances under his belt this term.
It’s a shame that Mari looks to be sidelined again after his long road to recovery last year, which included surgery, and winning his place back in the first team.
That said, he did play a lot of football in a short space of time over December and New Year, including 120 minutes against Newcastle in the FA Cup third round.
Hopefully Mari won’t be out for long and can return to first-team action right away, as he had been doing really well for the Gunners.