Juventus-bound Ramsay won’t play for Arsenal again
Manager Unai Emery says the Welsh star’s hamstring knock rules him out, even if the team get to Europa final
Arsenal manager Unai Emery confirmed on Wednesday that injured Wales midfielder Aaron Ramsey has made his last appearance for the club ahead of his move to Juventus.
Ramsey has already agreed to make a lucrative switch to Italian champions Juventus when his Arsenal contract expires at the end of the season. The 28-year-old suffered a hamstring injury during the second leg of Arsenal’s Europa League quarterfinal victory over Napoli and has now been ruled out for the rest of the season.
Emery’s side host Valencia in the Europa League semifinal first leg on Thursday, having lost all three games without Ramsey since he was forced off in Naples.
But even if Arsenal reach the final on May 29, Emery conceded the game would come too quickly for Ramsey to be involved. Ramsey, who won three FA Cups with Arsenal, is expected to be fit in time to start preseason with Juventus, but his absence is a blow to the Gunners’ bid to qualify for next season’s Champions League either by winning the Europa League or finishing in the Premier League’s top four.
Arsenal plan to hold a guard of honour for both Ramsay and retiring goalkeeper Petr Cech after Sunday’s match against Brighton at the Emirates Stadium – their final Premier League home game of the season.
Laurent Koscielny has played alongside Ramsey since joining from FC Lorient in 2010 and, in a jibe at previous Arsenal players who have left the club during that time, the Gunners defender hailed his teammate’s attitude since his move to Juventus was announced.
“What I like about Aaron is that, we know he signs for Juventus, but he is still a professional and always fights for the club and for the team. Sometimes you have players who have stopped fighting for this team, but I think he has loved this club and that is why he stayed at 100% for us. It shows a great mentality and character.”Mesut Özil is in the squad for Thursday’s clash with Valencia after missing the 3-0 weekend defeat at Leicester with a bruised foot, while Nacho Monreal also trained following a groin injury.