Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta faced the media after his side’s defeat to Manchester City in the Premier League yesterday.
The Gunners weren’t expected to beat the champions-elect but the result was nevertheless frustrating. We could’ve grabbed a point if we weren’t careless in the first two minutes of the game, but there’s nothing we can do now.
The footballing gods decided that a defeat was just not enough. We were punished by a horrible injury in the second half, and it looks like that will keep one of our key players out of the game against Benfica.
Rob Holding, whose progression has been labelled as ‘incredible’ by Arteta, was kneed in the face by Joao Cancelo. The Englishman was in serious pain and the doctors decided that he was concussed. Arsenal used the concussion substitute and brought David Luiz on.
Arteta was asked about Holding’s injury and the Arsenal boss confirmed that doctors had told him that the defender was indeed concussed.
He told Football London: “Well obviously that’s a call that has to be given by the doctor. That’s the communication we got with him so then we decided to make the concussion sub. Yeah, that’s what they told me (that it was a concussion). If that’s the case then I think he will miss a few days.”
Premier League’s concussion rules
The Premier League only recently introduced concussion substitutes but there have been guidelines in place for players who suffer head injuries since the 2014/15 season.
The rules state that concussed player will not be allowed to return to training for at least six days. The guidelines work on a step-by-step basis, with a player only allowed to progress a step every 24 hours – although this process can often take longer. (Sky Sports)
That clearly means that Holding will miss the game against Benfica on Thursday if he was concussed last night. That really is a shame, but Arsenal have no real cause for concern as we have David Luiz, Gabriel, Pablo Mari and Calum Chambers all ready to step in for the Englishman.