With Arsenal ace Bukayo Saka dealing with a hamstring injury, should Mikel Arteta risk his most prized asset against Manchester City?
Ever since Bukayo Saka limped off the field in the first half of Arsenal’s Champions League loss to Lens, the microscope has been on the England international.
There were questions as to whether Saka should’ve started in France given the recent knocks he sustained, but Mikel Arteta opted to utilise his superstar winger and paid the price.
Now, as Arsenal finalise preparations for their heavyweight clash against Manchester City, it has now been confirmed that Saka is dealing with a hamstring strain.
But now comes the million-dollar question: does Arteta risk him against City?
With Arsenal just one point behind the league leaders heading into this clash, is there more to lose than gain by playing Saka?
Let’s dive into it.
Should Mikel Arteta risk Arsenal star Bukayo Saka vs Man City?
Given how early on in the season we are, potentially risking Saka in a game of this magnitude is something that many can see happening.
Of course, that depends on how “fit” the winger is. A hamstring strain is nothing to mess with, but given that reports are stating that Saka will face a late fitness tbeforer to the City clash, that tells us that the injury isn’t THAT bad.
But do you risk him?
If he plays, how long? Does Arteta start him, or does he bring him on as a sub late in the game? All of those questions will be answered over the next few days.
With a win, Arsenal would overtake City at the summit of the league, depending on what Tottenham does at Luton.
However, despite all of that, given we are about to play just the eighth game of the league season, along with an international break to follow, is there much to gain by potentially risking Saka completely breaking down?
There are pros and cons to both playing and resting Saka, and it is going to be fascinating to see what Arteta does. If he rests Saka and Arsenal lose, fans will swallow that bitter pill.
However, suppose he plays, and Arsenal lose, and Saka’s injury worsens, which causes him to miss an extended period. In that case, one can only imagine the backlash the Gunners boss would face.
But, this is what managers are paid the big bucks… to make decisions exactly like this one.