Injury misfortune for Bayer 04 and Arthur. The right-back suffered a muscle tendon injury in his thigh while playing for the Brazilian Olympic team. According to club sources, his break could be up to three months.
He has been one of the positive surprises in this summer’s preparation. The 20-year-old Arthur, who arrived from America FC in Rio de Janeiro for a fee of seven million euros, showed no problems settling in at Leverkusen and immediately impressed as a real alternative at both full-back positions. But now the national player has to cope with a bitter setback.
As the club announced on Monday, Arthur suffered a muscle tendon injury in his right thigh during Brazil’s U-23 international against Morocco in Fez, Morocco, on Thursday and will be out until well into the autumn. The Europa League participant expects that Arthur could miss coach Xabi Alonso “for up to three months”. The Brazilian will undergo rehab at Leverkusen’s “Werkstatt”, the club’s own rehabilitation and training centre on the third floor of the BayArena.
His now upcoming long break from the game not only hits the summer purchase hard, but also his coach. After all, Arthur is considered a top-class replacement for Jeremie Frimpong, who is currently in top form, on the right side of defence. In fact, he is considered the more reliable defensive player compared to the Dutchman.
Arthur also proved his worth as a left-back in the dress rehearsal against West Ham United (4:0). Bayer 04 does not have a trained replacement for this position. Arthur would have been the first choice as an alternative to regular Alejandro Grimaldo here as well.
Top match on Friday
Ahead of Friday’s top-of-the-table clash in Munich, Xabi Alonso is thus deprived of a versatile option as Arthur can also operate as a shift play in the currently chosen 3-4-3. And since it is currently open whether left-footer Piero Hincapie, who as a trained centre-back can also be deployed on the outside in a four- or five-man backline, is already fit for action after breaking his metatarsal, the Werkself coach is now left with only Bayern loanee Josip Stanisic as an alternative for the two outside-back positions.