Arsenal are without ALL of their right-backs for Norwich clash as Takehiro Tomiyasu, Cedric Soares and Ainsley Maitland-Niles join Calum Chambers in testing positive for Covid
- Arsenal are down to the bare bones at right-back due to Covid absentees
- Calum Chambers, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Cedric Soares and Ainsley Maitland-Niles all tested positive, meaning Ben White started on the right side of defence
- Mikel Arteta is the latest manager to have to reshuffle after positive tests
Arsenal are without all of their right-backs after they caught Covid, therefore missing the Boxing Day clash with Norwich.
Takehiro Tomiyasu, Cedric Soares and Ainsley Maitland-Niles were all confirmed as being out with the virus before Calum Chambers joined them.
Mikel Arteta was forced to rejig his backline with Ben White in unfamiliar territory on the right side of defence.
Cedric Soares would have come in for Tomiyasu but then returned a positive Covid test
The Gunners named White in defence along with Gabriel, Rob Holding and Kieran Tierney for their trip to Carrow Road.
Tomiyasu was set to miss the game against Norwich anyway as he is suffering with a muscle injury.
It is likely that he would have been replaced by Cedric Soares but the Portugal international also returned a positive test.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles could have stepped in had he not also joined his right-back team-mates in isolation so Arteta was forced to make alternative arrangements.
Calum Chambers was already a known Covid positive prior to the late announcement about the other right-backs.
Ben White was deployed at right-back by Mikel Arteta as a makeshift option
The Gunners have given new advice to players over restrictions with club doctor Gary O’Driscoll reportedly advising players to avoid restaurants and crowded public places.
Prior to Sunday’s game, Arteta said: ‘But the situation is very tricky because it’s impossible to create a bubble around the training ground and stadium when the whole world is open.
‘Because it’s not about us, it’s about the people we have around us, it’s about our kids, it’s all the people that are connected to us that makes the situation really really tricky.’