Arsenal suffers extreme loss as Arteta reveals Gabriel Jesus has had SURGERY on knee and will miss start of season

ARSENAL have suffered a major blow on the eve of the new season after star striker Gabriel Jesus underwent surgery yesterday.

The £45million Brazilian had an operation on his right knee after complaining of constant pain in the joint during the pre-season build-up.
He will definitely miss Sunday’s Community Shield clash with Manchester City and the Premier League opener against Nottingham Forest in nine days’ time.

But manager Mikel Arteta fears Jesus could be out for considerably longer after spending three months on the sidelines when he suffered the original injury at the World Cup in Qatar last year.

Arteta admitted: “Unfortunately Gabby had a little procedure this morning and I think he’s going to be out for a few weeks.

“It’s not something major but he’s been feeling some discomfort in the last few weeks that has been causing him some issues.
It’s a big blow because we were getting him back to his best, especially the way he played in our last game against Barcelona. He was in good condition, but now we’ve lost him.

“It’s something related to the previous injury he had and the surgery. He had some irritation and we had to get it resolved.

“We had to make a decision and the best one was to protect the player and get him back as quickly as possible, so we decided the surgeon had to go in and sort it out.”

Jesus’ absence means Eddie Nketiah is likely to lead the line for Arsenal at Wembley on Sunday after deputising for 11 games last season.

But Arteta insists that the surgery will not affect the club’s thinking on the potential sale of £40million-rated Folarin Balogun.

He said: “The plans with Flo don’t change at all.

“Unfortunately we’re not going to have Gabby, but we have other options to play with different qualities and we’ll adapt.”

Bukayo Saka also missed last night’s 1-1 draw with Monaco in the Emirates Cup after initially being named among the substitutes.
Arteta said: “Bukayo was fine but he wasn’t feeling great on the bench. I think he has some sickness or illness and we didn’t want to use him.”

Oleksandr Zinchenko is another major injury concern for Arteta after failing to participate in any of Arsenal’s five pre-season games due to a persistent calf injury.

The Ukrainian international will not be involved against former club Manchester City on Sunday but Arteta insisted: “He’s close. I think he’s going to start training with the team and hopefully we will have him back very soon.”

Nketiah scored Arsenal’s 43rd minute equaliser in front of former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger last night before Aaron Ramsdale’s save from Takumi Minamino secured victory for the Gunners in a penalty shoot-out.

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