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Mikel Arteta Explains Why He Subbed off Declan Rice in the First Half of the North London Derby
- Jorginho replaced Declan Rice in the first half of the North London derby played at the Emirates
- Rice was initially thought to have picked up a calf injury midway through the first half
- The former West Ham United star has started all six games in the Premier League this season
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has explained the reason behind Declan Rice's strange substitution during the North London derby.
Rice, who has enjoyed a bright start to life at the Emirates since his summer move, was part of the Gunners' starting XI as they hosted rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday, September 24.
However, the England international could not last the entire 90 minutes of the tie, as he had to be subbed off in the first half.
His substitution caused panic among Arsenal fans, who feared Rice may have picked up a devastating injury this early into the start of the new season.
Arteta explains Rice substitution
However, Arteta has come out to allay any fears surrounding the fitness of the midfielder.
According to the Gunners boss, he had to sub off the midfielder as he had discomfort occasioned by pain on his back.
"Rice had some discomfort in his back," Arteta had said in his post-match via Metro.
"He was telling us during the first half he was not comfortable."
"Hopefully, he won’t be out or any period of time," he added.
Meanwhile, the two north London sides went on to play out a 2-2 thrilling draw, with Son Heung-Min scoring a brace for Spurs.
Saka Copies Maddison celebration
Elsewhere, Sports Brief also reported on Saka’s hilarious celebration after giving Arsenal the lead.
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Saka decided to use a darts celebration, something which keen fans will have noticed has been used by Maddison before.
This led to fans concluding that the talented winger had a savage side to him, as he copied a celebration of a rival who was literally fighting for three points for his team on the same pitch.