Arsenal have revealed that Jack Wilshere will be out for at least six weeks after suffering a hairline fracture in his left foot during England’s friendly victory over Denmark.
The injury occurred in the 12th minute of the international at Wembley in a challenge with Denmark’s Daniel Agger. Given that Wilshere then continued to play on until eventually coming off in the 59th minute, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger may have some interesting words for his England counterpart Roy Hodgson. Wilshere has been plagued by injury problems thus far in his young career, particularly to his ankles. In a statement released on the club’s official website, Arsenal were quick to point out that this latest problem was not related to any of his previous issues.
“Following initial scans carried out by the FA on Wednesday night, further investigation by Arsenal’s medical team has discovered a crack to a small bone in Jack’s left foot -- the navicular, an area of his foot which has not been previously injured,” it read.
The initial prognosis for the midfielder means he is set to miss a host of important fixtures. Those matches start with Everton in the FA Cup quarterfinal on Saturday, before the clash with Bayern Munich in the Champions League and then important Premier League dates with Tottenham, Chelsea, Swansea, Manchester City, Everton and West Ham. Given that it will be six weeks before Wilshere even begins to regain his match fitness, he could also miss the matches with Hull City and Newcastle United, meaning he would return with just two matches of the season remaining. If Arsenal were to make it through in the FA Cup, he would miss the semifinal, while he is likely to be absent for the Champions League quarterfinals and first leg of the semifinal, should Arsenal overturn a 2-0 deficit against Bayern Munich.
The injury further stretches Arsenal’s resources in central midfield. Aaron Ramsey is expected to be out until at least the north London derby on March 16 with a thigh injury. The Wales international has been missing since the win over West Ham on Boxing Day.
There could be some better news on the horizon, however. Reports suggest that Kim Kallstrom is slightly ahead of schedule in his recovery from a back injury, which was discovered when he was signed on loan from Spartak Moscow on the final day of the January transfer window. The experienced Sweden international could even be in the squad to take on Everton on Saturday. While the decision to sign Kallstrom was widely criticized, particularly given his injury, he could now play an important role in Arsenal’s midfield in the closing weeks of the season.
Ahead of the Gunner’s attempt to reach the FA Cup semifinals for the first time since 2009, Arsenal have a doubt about the fitness of Laurent Koscielny. The center-back sat out France’s friendly with the Netherlands after picking up a slight hamstring problem in training. However, it looks unlikely to keep him out of the fixture. Spanish left-back Nacho Monreal could return from a foot injury.