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Saka World Cup fears addressed by Arteta after Arsenal star's early injury withdrawal against Forest

19:15 SAST 2022/10/30
Saka 2022-23
Mikel Arteta spoke out after Bukayo Saka was forced off in the first half of Arsenal's Premier League clash with Nottingham Forest through injury.
  • Saka forced off against Forest
  • Replaced by Reiss Nelson
  • Arteta 'hopes' he won't miss World Cup

WHAT HAPPENED? Arsenal lost Saka to injury after just 27 minutes of their 5-0 victory over Nottingham Forest in the Premier League on Sunday. The winger was fouled by Renan Lodi in the first minute and then took another kick before going down and deciding he could not continue. Mikel Arteta replaced the forward with Reiss Nelson.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Saka's injury will be of concern to both Arsenal and England. The 21-year-old had earlier picked up his fifth Premier League assist of the season when he found Gabriel Martinelli for the opening goal. Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate will also be sweating on his fitness ahead of the World Cup in Qatar, which starts next month.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT DID ARTETA SAY? Arsenal boss Arteta was asked post-match whether the injury would keep the winger out of the World Cup, and was able to give a positive update.

"Hopefully not," he replied. "It was a bad kick that he suffered right at the start of the game, he was limping for a bit. But I don't see it as anything further than that."

WHAT NEXT? Southgate and England will hope Arteta's prognosis proves correct and that the injury is nothing serious. Arsenal, meanwhile, may have to do without their star winger when they take on FC Zurich in the Europa League on Thursday.