EPL

'Annoyed' Smith Rowe on course to return for Arsenal's next match

By Sports Desk November 19, 2022

Emile Smith Rowe says it is "annoying" to have played such a small part in Arsenal's record start to a Premier League season, but he is hopeful of returning for their next match.

The 22-year-old underwent surgery on a persistent groin injury in September and was ruled out until after the World Cup break.

Smith Rowe featured in 33 of Arsenal's 38 Premier League games last season – only three outfield players featured more regularly – but he has played just 48 minutes this term.

Arsenal are top of the division with their highest ever points tally (37) after 14 games, five points more than Manchester City, and Smith Rowe is eager to get back playing.

The three-cap England international attended Saturday's qualifying session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and provided an update on his rehabilitation.

"It's going really well at the moment," he told Sky Sports. "I'm really happy for the team but sometimes it's annoying when I can't feel like I’m involved, I can't be on the pitch. 

"It's amazing to see them doing so well and I can't wait to get back. Hopefully I'll be back by the first game after the World Cup. 

"I'm actually out here [in Saudi Arabia] doing rehab. Today was my day off and I'm back training tomorrow. I'm back on the pitch and stuff so it's going well."

Arsenal's first match after the five-week break is a home clash against West Ham on December 26, which is just eight days after the World Cup final.

Smith Rowe would have been in contention for a place in England's squad for Qatar if not for his injury issues this season, but he is supporting his team-mates from afar.

"I'm really confident in the team. Obviously we missed out at the last minute in the last big tournament (Euro 2020)," he said.

"I believe the boys are going to bring it home this time. The squad is really strong and it's looking good."

Related items

  • Prolific Kevin van Veen hails Motherwell fans Prolific Kevin van Veen hails Motherwell fans

    Kevin van Veen revealed Motherwell fans have given him “the chills” with their support during his record-breaking season in front of goal.

    The 31-year-old Dutch striker, who signed from Scunthorpe in 2021, scored 29 times for the Steelmen to help them secure seventh place in the cinch Premiership.

    Van Veen scored for the 11th successive game during Well’s 3-2 win over Dundee United on Sunday to beat the post-war record set by former Celtic striker Mark Viduka and also break a Motherwell club record set by Hugh Ferguson that had stood for 103 years.

    While his future is subject to speculation as his contract is up this summer, he told Motherwell’s official Twitter account how appreciative he is of the Fir Park fans.

    He said: “I will remember this (season) forever,

    “Whatever is going to happen in the summer, of course we need to see what is going to happen but these fans will be written in my mind forever.

    “When they sing ‘Kevin van Veen’ and all that type of stuff gives me the chills.

    “People have been so good for me since I arrived here.

    “I think a lot of people fell in love with me in my first game and that has continued and maybe even grown over time and I hope I have repaid them and I hope I got them off their seats here and there.

    “To get 29 goals for those people who have supported me the way they did, I am so happy that I have gave them something back because they have been amazing to me.”

  • Darren Moore: Joint effort led Sheffield Wednesday to promotion Darren Moore: Joint effort led Sheffield Wednesday to promotion

    Sheffield Wednesday boss Darren Moore saluted a “joint effort” from his players after their dramatic late 1-0 win over 10-man South Yorkshire rivals Barnsley sealed a return to the Championship.

    Josh Windass won the tie with the last action of 120-plus exhausting minutes as he emulated his dad Dean 15 years ago by bagging a dream play-off final winner.

    Moore, whose Owls team return to the second tier after two seasons in League One, said: “This is a special moment – it’s a delightful moment for everyone at the club.

    “It means so much to me to have taken such a great club back into the Championship.

    “This shows just what can be achieved when a club comes together.

    “I’m delighted for Josh. We’ve missed him quite a lot through injuries this season, but he’s got that quality and that instinct to get into the right place to score in those situations.

    “It’s not just about Josh, though, it’s been a brilliant joint effort.

    “Sometimes it’s about split hairs, and this was a big game at the biggest stadium, but we’ve got over the line when so much was at stake.

    “It’s the stuff dreams are made of – it’s been a titanic game and we’ve won it.

    “Despite having the extra man our boys were wilting a bit in extra time, but they’ve dug deep.

    “Both teams gave it everything, it was incredible stuff, but this is so big for the football club and we have to go and enjoy being back in a Championship league that is so exciting.”

    Chances proved to be at a premium in the opening 45 minutes.

    Barnsley went closest as both Adam Phillips and Nicky Cadden fluffed decent opportunities.

    Barnsley’s cause was then hindered significantly by Phillips’ 49th minute red card following a lunge on Lee Gregory, but they more than held their own as the scores remained goalless after 90 minutes.

    However, their resistance, and their hearts, were finally broken with the last action of the game, leaving boss Michael Duff to reflect with pride on what had been an energy-sapping 120 minutes for his players.

    Duff said: “Football is a cruel game, and frustration is the over-riding emotion I’m feeling right now.

    “My players gave absolutely everything, they did everything they could and so I’m gutted for all of them.

    “We’ve come out on the wrong end of a couple of decisions today, and that just adds to the frustration.

    “With 11 men we would have grown more into the game, and although there’s no guarantee we would even have gone on to win on penalties, I think that would have been a fairer way to lose.

    “Credit to Sheffield Wednesday and Darren Moore. They got 96 points in the regular season, but I don’t think they were the better team today.”

    Duff then expanded on the Phillips red card decision and also a potential penalty award that went begging.

    “Adam’s was a mis-timed tackle and a bit foolish,” added Duff.

    “But there was no intent there so it was maybe a yellow card at worst.

    “I’ve had plenty of text messages since the game saying it was a harsh red card, and many of them from people I totally trust in the game.

    “We’ve also not had a penalty all season, and we’ve been denied what should have been one in the biggest game of all.”

  • Newcastle must add strength in depth to compete next season – Eddie Howe Newcastle must add strength in depth to compete next season – Eddie Howe

    Newcastle will look all over the world to find the players that will give them the depth they need to compete next season, according to manager Eddie Howe.

    A first season in the Champions League in 20 years means an increased workload for Howe’s squad next term, and conversations have already taken place between the manager and club officials over resources during the transfer window.

    Injuries have stretched Newcastle thin at times this season despite recording their highest Premier League finish since 2003.

    Howe felt his side lacked the quality in reserve to win the game in the second half of Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Chelsea that brought the curtain down on a memorable first full season in charge for the manager.

    With the restrictions put in place by Financial Fair Play rules, he cited qualification for Europe’s top competition as the critical factor in freeing up the ownership to invest in recruitment.

    Still, Howe warned the market may not be kind as the club seek to build a side capable of competing on all fronts.

    “Yeah we’ve had discussions (on Saturday),” said the manager. “I don’t think (the budget) is ever outlined because there are so many variables to it, but certainly we know where we stand.

    “When you’re sat in my shoes, it’s never as big as you want it to be.

    “It’s a difficult one because we go into a lot of competitions next year, so we need the depth. I think this year we’ve been light, certainly in certain areas of the pitch. We’ve carried – in the second half of the season – four midfielders.

    “You’re one injury away from a very difficult situation so I think we need a little bit more depth.

    “We’re not there yet, you could see that (against Chelsea), but we are suffering from injuries. Certainly that’s a concern for us in that we do need to bolster our resources. We can’t be looking at one or two injuries and we’re in a difficult position.

    “In the second half we were stretched and maybe lacking the bench that could have changed the game to win it.”

    Newcastle won eight of their 10 league games in March and April to take control of their destiny in the race for the top four, but enjoyed just one more victory in their final five, securing their Champions League objective with a game to spare.

    Howe pointed to disruption caused by injuries – key players Joelinton, Joe Willock and Nick Pope were unavailable for the game at Stamford Bridge, whilst Alexander Isak and Matt Targett have also missed significant chunks of the season – as something that must not be allowed to derail the team next term.

    The visitors struggled after the break against Chelsea despite having had the better of a first half in which Anthony Gordon gave them the lead, later wiped out by a Kieran Trippier own goal.

    “We’ve done it all season, we’ve been hugely competitive,” said Howe. “I don’t think we’ve been an easy game for anybody.

    “The challenge for us next year is to maintain our standards and mentality, because when you come to these tough grounds, if you’re not robust enough to deal with the challenge, these can be really difficult games.

    “The players that we currently have have to be fit and ready to go (next season). They have to be ready to prove how good we are all over again. We start at zero next season. I think that’s a healthy way to look at it.

    “If we can add one or two players that make the difference in the transfer market, that would be good news.

    “We’ll have our eyes and ears hopefully all over everything, whether that’s teams getting promoted, relegated; all over the world. As I’ve said many times, the market’s going to be difficult.”

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.