Arsenal are hopeful of winning their battle to have Kieran Tierney’s quarantine cut short and having him available to face Manchester City.

Tierney was ordered to quarantine for 14 days after being declared a close contact of Scotland teammate Stuart Armstrong who tested positive for COVID-19 last week, ruling him out of Saturday’s trip to the Etihad.

But Arsenal have been pushing hard and lobbying the Scottish government, Lothian Health board and Scottish FA, with club doctor Gary O’Driscoll leading their bid to free left-back Tierney.

He has repeatedly tested negative himself and also shown he has antibodies to the virus.

When asked if Tierney will be available this weekend, manager Mikel Arteta said: ‘I hope so. We are very reassured that there is not any risk for him to be involved with us. That is the case we are defending really strongly with the authorities. I will be extremely disappointed if he is not able to play at the weekend.’

As reported by Sportsmail last week, Arsenal had vowed to fight all the way to get Tierney back in contention for the visit to City and were building up a case to prove he should be free to play.

Tierney was deemed a close contact of Armstrong after they and midfielder Ryan Christie – also ordered to isolate for 14 days – played computer games in one of the hotel rooms while away on international duty.

Lothian health board officials were called in after Armstrong’s positive test was returned on Wednesday to identify who else may have been potentially impacted.

Tierney released a statement confirming he had stuck to all the necessary guidelines and remained socially distant from his teammates throughout his time in the Scotland camp.

That was backed up when the LHB official entered the relevant room to assess where he and Armstrong had been sitting and measured that there was almost 3m between the pair, well outside the minimum social distancing limit.

Meanwhile the gamers in Scotland’s squad use their own consoles which come in individual cases with their own screens and accessories further reducing the possibility of any spread as they do not need to touch any of their teammate’s property.


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