Arsenal defender TakehiroTomiyasu is a big doubt for the Gunners ahead of their Premier League encounter with defending champions Manchester City on New Year’s Day. The two teams will take on each other in the first game of next year andJapan international Tomiyasu could miss out due to Covid-19.

Tomiyasu was a major absentee from Arsenal training on Wednesday as Covid-19 status is still unclear. He had sustained a muscle injury during the recent Premier League clash at Leeds United but he’s thought to have recovered from that injury. The Japanese utility defender went off injured during the second half of the Leeds game and he had to be replaced by Portuguese player Cedric Soares.

Arsenal were last in action against Norwich City on Boxing Day and ahead of the game, a statement from the club said that Tomiyasu has tested positive for Covid-19 alongside fellow right-back Cedric Soares and Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

Ahead of the City game, Arsenal have also stated that manager Mikel Arteta has tested positive for Covid-19 and won’t be in the dugout for the Premier League clash. In his absence, assistant manager Albert Stuivenberg will be in charge of the team for the City game.

Arsenal and Manchester City meet this weekend as two of the most in-form teams in the English top flight. Hosts Arsenal have won their last four Premier League matches, while City have won their last ten Premier League matches.

The Gunners began their run of four straight league wins with the 3-0 home win over Southampton before they saw off fellow London team West Ham United via a 2-0 scoreline. Arsenal made it three wins in a row in league terms with the 4-1 victory over home team Leeds United. The 5-0 away win over bottom club Norwich City on Boxing Day made it four league victories on the bounce.