Arsenal captain Mikel Arteta and defender Mathieu Debuchy are both set to be out of action for three months each, the English Premier League club announced Thursday as the injury crisis affecting the north London side intensified.
In a statement on their website, www.arsenal.com, the Gunners said Spanish midfielder Arteta’s latest spell on the sidelines would be for “approximately three months” after the Spain midfielder underwent ankle surgery.
Arsenal said Arteta had had a bony spur that was causing him discomfort removed from his left ankle, adding: “The procedure went well and Mikel will now begin a period of rehabilitation which is expected to last approximately three months.”
Arteta has not played for the London side since damaging a calf in the 2-0Champions League win at home to Borussia Dortmund on November 26.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said Thursday: “Mikel has had surgery which went well. I have just seen him, he is back with us at the training ground.
“He had a limited mobility in his ankle and some persistent inflammation that had an impact on his calf.
“That meant we had to make the decision to have surgery and it’s a proper solution which gives him the best chance to recover,” the Frenchman explained.
There was more bad news for Arsenal when Wenger said later Thursday that France full-back Debuchy, who suffered a dislocated shoulder following a shove by Marko Arnautovic — who has escaped disciplinary action over the incident — in Sunday’s 3-0 win against Stoke, was also facing three months on the sidelines.
“Mathieu had a surgery on his right shoulder following the injury on Sunday,” said Wenger.
“It’s very unfortunate for Mathieu, it’s unbelievable because he’s had two surgeries in the same season.
“He just came back, he played seven games and he’s out again. I count three months out for Mathieu because contact will be a problem for the shoulder.”
Arsenal are also currently missing Jack Wilshere (ankle), Kieran Gibbs (ankle) and Abou Diaby (calf) all while Calum Chambers has been suffering with illness.
Danny Welbeck hasn’t featured in Arsenal’s last three matches because of a thigh problem but the England forward could return for Sunday’s fixture away to Premier League champions Manchester City.
Arsenal are presently fifth in the table, just a point off a Champions League place. – Agence France-Presse