Arsenal suffer major injury blow ahead of Man City clash with player ruled out
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Arsenal have suffered a major injury blow with Emile Smith Rowe ruled out of the club’s FA Cup clash with Manchester City, according to reports.
The Gunners are at the summit of the Premier League some five points clear of their nearest challengers Manchester City, with a game in hand.
However, due to a fixture rescheduling Mikel Arteta’s side are yet to have come up against City at all this term, with the first clash between the two sides taking place in the FA Cup fourth round on Friday evening.
Though Arsenal have taken great strides this season, they will be looking to improve on their woeful record against Pep Guardiola’s side. Arsenal have lost their last six matches at the Etihad Stadium in all competitions.
However, if the north Londoners are to come out on top they will have to do so without Smith Rowe.
Smith Rowe ruled out against City
The Evening Standard claims Smith Rowe has been ruled out of the FA Cup fourth-round clash against Manchester City with a thigh injury suffered in training.
However this issue is not thought to be serious, nor is it said to be related to the previous groin problem the player encountered.
In turn, Arsenal’s decision to leave Smith Rowe out is thought to be merely a precautionary measure.
The 22-year-old only just returned from a four-month-long layoff after having an operation on his groin.
He made his first appearance since September in Arsenal’s 3-0 win over Oxford United in the last round of the FA Cup.
Smith Rowe replaced Bukayo Saka to play 15 minutes against the League One outfit, before featuring in the dying embers of Arsenal’s 2-0 win over north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur.
However, the midfielder was a noticeable absentee from pictures of the Arsenal side travelling to Manchester, with the Mirror claiming he was not seen getting off the bus.