Arsenal crucially returned to winning ways at the weekend as they thumped Crystal Palace 5-0, but the Gunners were hit with a couple of injury concerns.
Declan Rice, who's started every Premier League game for the club since joining for £105m in the summer, was withdrawn in the second half with Arsenal 3-0 ahead. After limping off the field, Rice reportedly told one of Arteta's coaching staff that he was dealing with a hamstring issue.
"Hammy" was how Rice described it.
Declan Rice injury update: How many games will Arsenal star miss?
Arsenal have been without Thomas Partey for the majority of 2023/24 after he underwent surgery in October, and supporters wouldn't want to imagine their side without Rice anchoring the midfield.
While the midfielder drew some criticism for his supposed cautious displays amid Arsenal's recent slump, there's no doubt that Rice has been a huge net positive for the Gunners this season. Any prolonged absence would be devastating, even if Partey returns to action soon.
Speaking about the midfielder after Saturday's win, Mikel Arteta said: “[Rice] was feeling some tightness. I don’t know what muscle it was. But when he says that at 3-0 then obviously we don’t want to take any risks."
Fortunately for the Gunners, they aren't in action this weekend after they were dumped out of the FA Cup by Liverpool to kick off 2024. They'll enjoy a longer break before they face Nottingham Forest at the City Ground on Tuesday 30 January.
Rice will be assessed ahead of next week's fixture, but the latest indications suggest he won't miss any games. The Daily Mail's Sami Mokbel reports that the midfielder hasn't sustained any muscle damage and was merely suffering from tightness on Saturday.
Moreover, Gabriel, who scored twice in Saturday's win, was forced off late on with what Arteta later vaguely described as "discomfort". Updates since the weekend have come few and far between regarding the Brazilian.