Arsenal boss Arteta issues Saka injury update ahead of crucial Spurs clash

Mikel Arteta has eased fears that Bukayo Saka could miss Sunday’s north London derby, insisting the Arsenal winger “is fine” after an injury scare.

WHAT HAPPENED? Saka limped off 15 minutes from the end of Arsenal’s 3-0 win against Oxford in the FA Cup on Monday night after appearing to go down with a muscle injury. That raised concerns that he could miss this weekend’s game at Tottenham, but Arteta insisted that the England international had not done anything serious.

WHAT THEY SAID: “Saka is fine,” the Arsenal boss said after the victory at the Kassam Stadium. “It’s always tough to win these matches. It was a physical game in many moments but we stood by that. We changed things in the second half, got more control of the game and found the openings to win.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Arsenal fans will be hoping Arteta is proved correct about Saka, given Sunday’s vital trip to their north London rivals in the Premier League. He was replaced by Emile Smith Rowe after limping off, with Smith Rowe making his first appearance for four months following groin surgery.

“It’s been four months since he played so I think it was the perfect game to give him some minutes to get off the blocks,” Arteta said. “Now he needs to start to get available and start to play at the highest level because we’re going to need him.”