Southampton look to have been handed another big injury blow, with Kyle Walker-Peters expected to miss Tuesday’s game with Arsenal after picking up an injury.
The club confirmed earlier this week that the right-back would miss the game against the Gunners after he picked up a muscle injury in training.
It comes as a huge blow to Ralph Hasenhuttl, as the 23-year-old has played every single minute in the Premier League so far this season, having established himself as a key player in the Austrian’s squad following his permanent move from Tottenham Hotspur during the summer.
The young defender has been one of the Saints’ star performers so far this season, having averaged a strong 7.03 rating across his 18 appearances in the top-flight, which is enough to see him ranked as the fifth-best performer in the Premier League.
He has certainly had a big impact on Southampton’s defensive performance since joining, as they have already earned eight clean sheets in the Premier League this season, the third-most in the division, meaning they are just one away from the total they managed in the entirety of the 2019/20 season.
Only Oriol Romeu has averaged more tackles than the right-back this season, whilst he also scores highly on the number of interceptions, blocks and clearances, emphasising how important he has become in this Southampton side.
Walker-Peters was excellent in Southampton’s 1-0 win against Arsenal in the FA Cup on Saturday, providing the assist for the only goal of the game, so it is undoubtedly going to cause Hasenhuttl some frustration that he is unavailable for Tuesday’s Premier League fixture, especially in a time where the Saints are going through an injury crisis.
It looks as if Yan Valery is likely to step up in his place, and considering his lack of game time this season, he could well be exposed by Arsenal’s in-form youngsters Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith-Rowe on the Southampton right-hand side.
Therefore, Hasenhuttl will be praying that Walker-Peters’ injury is only a minor one and that he will be back in time for the home game against Aston Villa at the weekend.