Arsenal ‘Reluctantly’ Apply To Have North London Derby Postponed

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Arsenal ‘Reluctantly’ Apply To Have North London Derby Postponed.

Arsenal have requested that this weekend’s north London derby be postponed due to Covid, injuries, and absences from the Africa Cup of Nations.

“We can confirm we have made an application to the Premier League for the postponement of Sunday’s north London derby against Tottenham Hotspur,” following speculations that they would seek for the visit to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium to be rescheduled.”

“We have reluctantly taken this step but we have many players currently unavailable across our squad as a result of Covid, injuries and players away with their countries at AFCON. We will provide more information as soon as it’s available.”

Emile Smith Rowe, Sead Kolasinac, Bukayo Saka, Cedric Soares and Takehiro Tomiyasu are all sidelined as things stand. Smith Rowe is out with a groin injury, Kolasinac is nursing a hamstring problem and Tomiyasu has a calf issue, with Saka and Cedric both forced off during Arsenal’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg against Liverpool on Thursday evening.

When you add in Martin Odegaard’s positive Covid test and the extensive list of Arsenal players at AFCON — Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe, Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny, and youngster Omar Rekik are all competing – an already threadbare roster appears even more ragged.

Following Arsenal’s announcement, the Premier League issued a statement to confirm that it had received their application.

“The Premier League has received a postponement request from Arsenal relating to their away match against Tottenham Hotspur, due to be played at 16.30 GMT on Sunday 16 January,” it read.

“The Premier League Board will meet tomorrow to review the application and inform both clubs and their fans of its decision.”

Arsenal’s roster management will be questioned after loaning away Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Folarin Balogun to Roma and Middlesbrough, respectively, this month. Arteta could have another option in midfield now that the club has allegedly recalled academy talent Miguel Azeez from his loan at Portsmouth.

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