Arsenal frustrated by Scottish Government in Kieran Tierney fight ahead of Man City game

Arsenal are losing their battle with the Scottish Government in their attempts to get Kieran Tierney available for Saturday’s trip to Manchester City.

Full-back Tierney has been ordered to self-isolate for 14 days by Scottish authorities after being found to be a close contact of his international teammate Stuart Armstrong, who tested positive for coronavirus.

Both players – plus Celtic’s Ryan Christie, another close contact of Armstrong’s – missed Scotland’s three matches during the international break against Israel, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, but Tierney has now repeatedly tested negative for the virus.

The left-back has also released a statement through Arsenal insisting that he shouldn’t have been deemed a close contact of Southampton midfielder Armstrong in the first place.

Armstrong’s 10-day period of isolation will come to an end on Friday, making him eligible for the Saints’ trip to Chelsea on Saturday.

As it stands Tierney won’t be able to face Manchester City on Saturday

Tierney, who was asked to isolate for 14 days, said : “I’m so disappointed and frustrated to be in this situation.

“I have adhered to all regulations and made sure I was socially distancing from my team mates in the hotel. I’ve also tested negative.

“I know Arsenal and the SFA are now in discussions with the Scottish authorities to gain a further understanding.”

Southampton’s Armstrong can face Chelsea on Saturday if he is deemed fit enough

The Mail Online report that officials from the Lothian Health Board were called in to identify who could be deemed to be a close contact of Armstrong’s.

They are said to have found that Tierney and Armstrong were sitting almost three metres apart while playing video games at the Scotland base, and so adhering to the two metre social distancing guidelines.

Arsenal remain hopeful of gaining enough proof to convince the Scottish Government that Tierney should be allowed to face City at the Etihad, although their hopes earning special dispensation appear remote as authorities continue to take a tough stance on the virus.

Mikel Arteta says he hopes Tierney can play

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Speaking on Thursday, Mikel Arteta said discussions are ongoing over the Scot’s availability.

“This is getting very complicated when we are sending players abroad and obviously you lose control, some authorities have different regulations to the actual ones in the Premier League,” he told the Arsenal website.

“We are still having some discussions with the authorities and hopefully we will know more this afternoon.”

When asked if he thought Tierney could face City, he added: “I hope so.”

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