Lucas Torreira Posts Injury Update, Talks Impact of the Coronavirus at Arsenal

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistMarch 17, 2020

Portsmouth's English defender James Bolton (L) challenges Arsenal's Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira (C) resulting in an injury for Torreira during the English FA Cup fifth round football match between Portsmouth and Arsenal at Fratton Park stadium in Portsmouth, southern England, on March 2, 2020. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /  (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Arsenal midfielder Lucas Torreira has provided an update on his recovery after fracturing his ankle. He has also said manager Mikel Arteta "is improving" after he tested positive for the coronavirus. 

Torreira's season looked as though it had ended prematurely when he came off early in the 2-0 FA Cup fifth-round win over Portsmouth in early March.

It was reported the setback would keep the Uruguay international sidelined for eight to 10 weeks, and he took to social media (h/t MailOnline's Tom Caldon) as he seeks to hasten his return: "Working and messing with recovery. All together, we will move forward."

Lucas Torreira #LT11 @LTorreira34

#Yomequedoen🏡 Trabajando y metiendo con la recuperación 🦵🏻⚽️ 🤜🏻 COVID-19 🦠 Todos juntos 🌍 💪🏻 vamos a salir adelante. #LT11 https://t.co/tRBiWA6Hrq

Torreira's chances of returning by the end of the season looked slim at the time of his diagnosis when Arteta suggested there was a chance he may have played his last game this term:

PA Dugout @PAdugout

Mikel Arteta shares his thoughts on midfielder Lucas Torreira, who is unlikely to play again for Arsenal this season due to a fractured ankle https://t.co/N1ihynyy6o

The Premier League has since been suspended until at least April 4 in response to the coronavirus pandemic, with the campaign looking likely to be either extended or cancelled altogether.

Torreira told Radio Sport 890 (h/t MailOnline's Kishan Vaghela): "I had to buy some devices, and the club will collaborate with everyone so that we can continue working individually in our homes. I'm happy because the exams were good. I'm still wearing the orthopaedic boot. In eight or 10 weeks I will be able to work normally."

Torreira now stands a better chance of having a greater effect on Arsenal's season post-recovery should the campaign resume, and Simon Collings of the Evening Standard praised his unique input:

Simon Collings @sr_collings

Torreira could - at a push - make final League game against Watford on May 17 or FA Cup final (should Arsenal get there) on May 23, but that's effectively him done. Blow for Arteta, particularly ahead of City, few in the squad who can do the job Torreira does.

Arteta was the first Premier League figurehead to test positive for COVID-19, and Torreira spoke of the impact felt since the illness spread in England:

"The truth is that we didn't expect this virus to reach the club, the locker room. Mikel Arteta is better. He was able to communicate with us, and he is improving.

"In recent days, many cases of coronavirus were discovered in London and people were nervous. In some supermarkets, you can no longer find toilet paper or gel alcohol."

Arsenal sat ninth in the Premier League at the time when play was postponed, and Arteta's side were also due to face Sheffield United in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.

Perhaps the Spaniard's greatest improvement since he was appointed has been tightening Arsenal's defence, but the Telegraph's Sam Dean highlighted another way in which Arteta is having a positive effect:

Sam Dean @SamJDean

Back to work after two weeks away. Very good news for Arsenal that club doctor Gary O’Driscoll has changed his mind about joining Liverpool. He's a popular figure behind the scenes & his decision to stay is further evidence of the improved mood at #AFC since Arteta's appointment.

Arsenal announced at the time of Arteta's positive test that the full first-team squad were to be put in self-isolation, and managing director Vinai Venkatesham said Arteta was "disappointed but in good spirits."

Torreira said he's "quarantined at home and am working on my own in recovery."

The South American added that plans to return to his native Uruguay were disrupted after "all the flights were cancelled due to the coronavirus."

The former Sampdoria star made 21 starts in 33 appearances this season prior to his injury, but Torreira will hope to grow his status among Arteta's ranks should the campaign resume.