Arsenal had one of its most complete performances of the season against Stoke City when it ran out with a 3-nil victory on Sunday. However, the match like most others this season was marred by another injury to a key player. This time Mathieu Debuchy joined the list of injured players that was gradually reducing. The French right back suffered a dislocated shoulder after he was shoved while trying to ensure that the ball was actually out of play, his collision with the advertising hoarding resulted in another freak injury for the former Magpie.
After the match, Arsene Wenger spoke of the situation, and not surprisingly, it was a grim picture.
“He has a dislocated shoulder. It is difficult (to say how long he will be out) – you need a diagnosis from a specialist.”
However, it has now been confirmed he may be out for as many as 3 months which means Arsenal may not get to see him play until about April. The absence of Mathieu Debuchy is another blow to Arsenal’s aspirations this season. He has been very unlucky with the injuries he has suffered since he joined the club. The injury in September that kept him out for three months after he damaged ankle ligament was another he was unlucky with. In his absence, Hector Bellerin and Calum Chambers will deputise. The former did not look out of place when he entered the fray against Stoke City, playing with gusto and confidence. Although, he was in the team because of Calum Chambers’ was out with illness. He should be fit to face Manchester City this weekend. Although, Arsene Wenger will have a decision to make over who starts amongst the two right backs in the absence of Mathieu Debuchy.
Kieran Gibbs did not play a part in the match against Stoke City either with a combination of illness and a sore ankle. The English left back has developed a reputation for being brittle, and he has not had a sustained run in the side since he became first choice left back in 2011. His injury will be assessed ahead of the trip to the Etihad. Nacho Monreal remains an able deputy, if not a better first choice as it stands.
Also on the injury front, is Danny Welbeck, he has not featured in the last three matches, because of a thigh injury. He is expected to return for the Premier League match against the Citizens. And being a Manchester lad, he would be eager to play a part against Manuel Pellegrini’s side.
The situation of Mikel Arteta is currently unclear. He suffered a calf injury last November, in the Champions League match against Anderlecht, was expected to be out for a month, but suffered a setback, and so far no specific date has been given for a return. He has spent more time out this season, than on the pitch for Arsenal. It underlines the need of the club in that position of the field.
Jack Wilshere remains a long term absentee with the ankle injury he suffered in November’s league match against Manchester United. He should be back in March.
However, while there is certainty as regard Wilshere’s comeback date, the same cannot be said of Abou Diaby, who the manager has ostensibly stopped talking about for obvious reasons.