Tuesday, 23 April, 2019

Arsenal boss Unai Emery believes Danny Welbeck's injury affected his players

Unai Emery will be without five players to take on Sporting Lisbon with Ozil: Emery transforming Arsenal
Cary Erickson | 09 November, 2018, 11:15

He was treated on the pitch for several minutes, receiving oxygen before leaving on a stretcher and being transferred to hospital.

Guendouzi will partner Granit Xhaka at the base of Arsenal's 4-2-3-1 and they will look to dominate the Sporting midfield.

His recent showing came against Liverpool on Saturday when he came off the bench to set up Alexandre Lacazette for Arsenal's equaliser that extended their unbeaten run to 14 matches across all competitions.

And while Nelson may not be a ready-made replacement for Welbeck, Emery says he is keeping a keen eye on his progress. "You can see on the pitch people know where they need to run, where they need to press, you can see the difference already".

Welbeck is out of contract at the end of the season, and Emery added: "He's a very good person".

"It's one big family and we're always going to fight for each other".

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"We are working from game to game to understand it better". He's helped us with his behaviour, with his quality and his capacity.

Some of his team-mates were also visibly affected by the incident.

A heavily changed Arsenal side were unable to break down a dogged Sporting team, who were reduced to 10 men in the 88th minute when defender Jeremy Mathieu fouled striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as he raced towards the area. "He always wants us to be at 100 per cent, giving our best".

But Arsenal could not take advantage as Aubameyang blasted the resulting free-kick well over the crossbar.

A win for Emery's side against the Portuguese club will ensure Arsenal top the group.

"We were aware of the opponent's quality but we, knowing our capacity and being creative and aggressive with and without ball, could try to surprise here".