Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen is ruled out of the club's pre-season tour of Asia with a persistent back injury.
By Liam Power, Reporter Filed: Tuesday, July 9, 2013 at 04:56 UK
Last Updated: Tuesday, July 9, 2013 at 10:54 UK
Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen has been forced to delay his return to pre-season training by a persistent back problem.
Vermaelen aggravated the recurring injury in his lower back while on international duty with Belgium last month, with massage treatment also required on a related thigh strain.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has now been forced to rule the defender out of Thursday's travelling squad for their pre-season tour of Asia with a suspected cracked bone in his lower back, according to The Mirror.
The 27-year-old endured a frustrating end to last season, with Wenger preferring the central defensive partnership of Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker for the final 10 Premier League matches.