Mikel Arteta admits Bukayo Saka fears over Arsenal and England workload

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Bukayo Saka has become a key player at Arsenal (Picture: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has admitted he is concerned over Bukayo Saka’s workload for Arsenal and England as the 19-year-old prepares to return from injury against West Ham on Sunday.

The versatile Gunners star has quickly become a key player for Arteta, making 33 appearances in all competitions so far this season, scoring six goals.

England boss Gareth Southgate has also been impressed with the teenager, capping him four times for England over 2020 and calling him up for the three upcoming World Cup qualifiers over the next two weeks.

Saka picked up a hamstring injury in the north London derby win over Tottenham last weekend, missing the Europa League match against Olympiakos on Thursday, but is already back in contention to play the Hammers on Sunday afternoon.

Despite being rushed back pretty rapidly, Arteta admits that he is concerned that Saka may be playing too much and insists he will make the ‘right call’ as to whether he features or not.

The Spaniard was asked if holds fears over Saka’s workload and said: ‘Yes, but that’s why we need some really good communication between ourselves and the player and the national team.

‘I know how important he is for us and for the summer with England, so let’s make the right call and let’s think about the short term but the future as well.

‘It’s about the support, guidance, education and coaching we give them and then the other factor is how they deal everything that happens externally.

‘In order to do the best as well, his family and entourage is key.

‘Bukayo is lucky that he has the right people around him and that’s going to be really important for him.’

Arsenal’s only other injury concern at the moment is Willian, who may miss the trip to east London on Sunday, but otherwise Arteta has plenty of options at his disposal if he doesn’t want to risk Saka.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette, Martin Odegaard, Emile Smith Rowe, Nicolas Pepe, Gabriel Martinelli, Reiss Nelson and Dani Ceballos are all available to Arteta as part of his front four.

MORE : Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe names Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba as his toughest opponent

MORE : Arsenal provide Bukayo Saka and Willian injury update ahead of West Ham clash

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