Arsenal star Bukayo Saka is a big doubt ahead of the Premier League encounter with Aston Villa later this week after he picked up a knock in the first half of the London Derby meeting with Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium on Monday night. The Gunners will entertain Villa at the Emirates Stadium on Friday night and England international Saka might not make it in time for the game as a result of the injury he sustained against the Eagles.
Saka picked up a knock towards the end of the first half after he was kicked wildly by Palace midfielder James McArthur. Scottish international McArthur escaped with a yellow card issued by centre referee Mike Dean when he could have easily been sent off.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was forced into a change at the start of the second half as Saka could not continue as a result of the aforementioned knock. Summer signing Albert Sambi Lokonga came on for the Three Lions of England winger. At that point, the Gunners had established a one-nil lead thanks to the eighth minute lead from star player Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after Palace goalkeeper Vicente Guaita could only parry the shot from Ivorian winger Nicholas Pepe into his path.
Gunners legend Patrick Vieira made the headlines ahead of the London Derby encounter and his team responded well to him in the second half through Christian Benteke and Odsonne Edouard. On his first return to his old stomping ground as a manager in the colours of Palace, Vieira came close to leaving the Emirates Stadium with the three points on offer. Belgian international Benteke scored the equaliser on 50 minutes before Palace took the lead for the first time through Frenchman Edouard on 73 minutes.
Crystal Palace kept Arsenal at bay until five minutes into added time when French substitute Alexandre Lacazette broke Eagles hearts with the equaliser to ensure that the two teams settled for a score draw.