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Untold Injury Index – Gameweek 1 (A New Season, same old injury story?)

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The season begins: here’s the widest coverage of Arsenal imaginable: see the end of the article for details of how Untold is evolving…

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Untold Injury Index – Gameweek 1 (A New Season, same old injury story?)

By Dale Higginbottom

Another season begins and injuries are already showing with some of the big teams in the league, already experiencing injuries to key players. Whether these injuries are going to impact the season is still to be decided but I’m sure we’ll be treated to more of the same issues as last season.

With a new season, we have a new injury review. After a season of doing it I now realise some of the missing parts and some of the data that I could add to enhance the reports. I have decided to include the types of injuries for each player along with the number of games a player has missed to-date. The types of injuries are listed below and hopefully this data will help to explain things a bit more than we have been able to in the past season.

A = Ankle I = Illness
B = Back J = Foot
C = Calf K = Knee
D = Dead Leg L = Achilles
E = Hamstring M = Muscle
F = Fatigue/Lack of Fitness S = Shoulder
G = Groin T = Thigh
H = Head Injury/Concussion

We’re still just going to focus on the top six but in addition I aim to add the details of each of the opposition teams and their injuries for the game.

So, what have we seen this week? Here are the numbers.

Newcastle Vs Arsenal (0-0)

Injuries Newcastle (3) Arsenal (3)
Goalkeeper Harper (K) N/A
Defence Perch (K) N/A
Midfield Ben Arfa (A) Wilshere (A,1), Diaby (A,1),

Nasri (M,1)

Attack N/A N/A
Additional issues N/A Van Persie & Koscielny recovered from  slight injuries to start the game.

West Brom Vs Man Utd (1-2)

Injuries West Brom (3) Man Utd (6)
Goalkeeper N/A N/A
Defence McAuley (I) Rafael (S,1), Evra (K,1)
Midfield Thomas (D) Valencia (A,1), Carrick (L,1), Fletcher (I,1)
Attack Odemwingie (A) Hernandez (H,1)
Additional issues Mulumbu and Reid were doubts for the game but started and played most of the game. Ferdinand and Vidic both had to be replaced after picking up injuries in the second half.

Stoke Vs Chelsea (0-0)

Injuries Stoke (4) Chelsea (3)
Goalkeeper N/A N/A
Defence Higginbotham (K), Upson (F) Bertrand (T,1), Luiz (K,1)
Midfield N/A Essien (K,1)
Attack Fuller (L), Sidibe (L) N/A
Additional issues Delap was a doubt with a hamstring injury but started, he was later forced off with a recurrance of the injury. Etherington was also replaced in the second half after picking up an injury. Lampard, Ivanovich and Mikel all made the squad after being doubts for the game. Mikel Started and played the whole game, Ivanovich was an unused substitute.

Liverpool Vs Sunderland (1-1)

Injuries Liverpool (3) Sunderland (4)
Goalkeeper N/A Gordon (K)
Defence Skrtel (C,1), Johnson (T,1) O’Shea (H)
Midfield Gerrard (G,1) Meyler (K)
Attack N/A Campbell (K)
Additional issues Suarez was a doubt with fatigue but started the game and played the first 75 mins Richardson was a slight doubt but started and played the whole game.

Tottenham Vs Everton

Match postponed due to safety fears

Later today (Monday) the following is expected

Man City Vs Swansea

Man City (1) Swansea (2)
Goalkeeper N/A N/A
Defence N/A Monk (J)
Midfield N/A Bodde (E)
Attack Tevez (F,1) N/A
Additional issues Aguero is lacking fitness but expected to start on the bench

Well, United (the only winning team so far this weekend) have double the injuries of anyone else this week. The injuries to Vidic and Ferdinand also didn’t help, especially as they are trying to settle in a new goalkeeper. In fact, after Ferdinand was withdrawn on Sunday, United did not have one single player out of last season’s first choice back five available

For Arsenal, it’s a pretty low total, which you’d expect for the opening game of the season. It would be nice to think that this could continue but we all know that is just a pipe dream. One thing with the three listed players is that Nasri’s injury is likely a cover for his transfer to Man City. With a one-match ban in Europe, I believe he’s likely to be an Arsenal player to see out the ban on Tuesday before making the final move later in the week, but I still could be proven wrong.

Talking of City, they continue their run of good luck from last season and only record one injury and maybe I’m a little cynical over Tevez’s lack of fitness as it could be a similar situation as we have with Nasri, as he awaits a move to a new club.

Chelsea and Liverpool could each only manage draws like us, despite being in a similar injury situation to Arsenal. Their respective opponents were also not too badly hit on the injury front so maybe a couple of small surprises on the opening weekend.

Hopefully, with the two mid-week games to play, we can avoid any major injury issues ahead of the games against Liverpool and United but we might have been dealt a slightly better hand with United’s defensive injuries this weekend.

The first couple of weeks in the season are always difficult to truly judge whether a player is injured or not. Clubs will often withdraw a player from the squad (and declare him as injured) to avoid injuries and therefore scupper any chances of proposed transfers. On top of this there can be plenty of other reasons why injury lists might not be 100% reflective of injuries and that’s the topic of a future article.

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Elsewhere on Untold Today…

Untold Ref Review: Stoke Chelsea

Untold defenders: how well did we do?

Joel Campbell, seven players and a new academy.

(And don’t forget there’s an Untold article in the club programme tonight – and for every Arsenal game with the series “Arsenal Uncovered”)

7 comments to Untold Injury Index – Gameweek 1 (A New Season, same old injury story?)

  • Great to have you back Dale.

    Given the way the League has handed out suspensions after the first match I think we ought to add those in too!

  • WalterBroeckx

    Really like the new format Dale.
    I also like the inclusion on where the injury is. I think you have been thinking of seeing what exactly the injuries are at the end of the season in the hope to see some kind of pattern?
    Because this could be found very quickly with the way you present the injuries. Great work

    Untold Arsenal, the place to get to know the facts might be a new title Tony. 😉

  • Jerom J.

    I thought Nasri’s exclusion was due to illness? It says it here http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,12876_7102877,00.html

    And I do like the format as well, really well laid! =)

  • Dale

    Thanks Tony and Walter. I might still play around with the layout to make it a bit more presentable and don’t really see any harm in including suspensions as it might add to the contrast against the opposition team.

  • Dale

    @ Jerom J.
    Arsenal.com state Nasri as having a muscular problem so I went with that.

  • Jerom J.

    @Dale Ah okay, I must have missed it on the website then =/

  • Fedda

    Nasri – Lack of Will