Takehiro Tomiyasu continued his journey to full fitness against Manchester United’s u21 team today.
The Japanese international was integral to the success the Gunners had last season, however, in his absence Arteta’s men stagnated.
This season the need for the defender's return is less urgent.
However, Arsenal are keen to see the former Bologna man return to action soon.
His 45 minutes for the u21 side today is the next step on that journey.
Tomiyasu was subbed off at half time, however, this was part of a prearranged fitness programme rather than being related to any kind of injury
The Gunners no.18 wasn’t the only member of the senior squad to feature, with Marquinhos starring for the u21’s.
He was levels above those around him, scoring and assisting one, the Brazilian looked as though the talents far exceed the level he was operating at.
Time will tell if the young starlet will remain at the club this season or go out on loan, but on today’s showing he is certainly too good for youth team football.
Some Marquinhos highlights from today’s u21 game vs United (he’s number 7). Hopefully Arsenal have a better angle of his goal… pic.twitter.com/lihFFbhK2O— Dan Critchlow (@afcDW) August 6, 2022
It will be of deep consideration to Arteta that the fixture schedule this season is incredibly condensed, with Europa League football on top of the winter World Cup.
Quality in the absence of Saka is needed on the right wing, and if Marquinhos can prove himself to be that player, it will save the recruitment team at Arsenal a lot of hassle.
As for Tomiyasu, he will be hoping to return to the matchday squad against Leicester next weekend.
However, with White performing so capably in his place, there is no pressing concern to force the Japanese star back earlier than necessary.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy