Arsenal’s injury woes deepen as Theo Walcott is ruled out for the season
Theo Walcott is ruled out for at least six months after suffering knee ligament damage in Arsenal's win over Tottenham
Theo Walcott has been ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering knee ligament damage in Arsenal’s FA Cup win over Tottenham on Saturday.
The 24-year-old is expected to be sidelined for at least six months and will also miss the World Cup in Brazil after he was carried off on a stretcher in the second half of the 2-0 victory at Emirates Stadium.
Everyone at Arsenal wishes Theo a speedy recovery and we look forward to seeing him back on a football pitch as soon as possible
An Arsenal statement read: “Theo has sustained a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee.
“He will have surgery in the near future and is expected to be out for at least six months, thus missing the rest of the season and the World Cup.”
The news will come as a blow to Arsenal’s Premier League title bid after the England international netted five goals in his last six games.
Walcott, capped 36 times by England, missed two months of the season with an abdominal injury but has scored six goals in all competitions, notching up four assists.
The Arsenal statement continued: “Everyone at Arsenal wishes Theo a speedy recovery and we look forward to seeing him back on a football pitch as soon as possible.”
The loss of Walcott deepens the Gunners’ striking crisis, after Nicklas Bendtner was ruled out for a month with an ankle problem to leave Olivier Giroud as Arsene Wenger’s only available recognised centre-forward.
The France international, however, has missed Arsenal’s last two games due to illness and an ankle injury.
Wenger had initially appeared reluctant to dip into the January transfer market but conceded that he may have to rethink his plans for the mid-season window if Walcott’s injury turned out to be serious.
Speaking after the FA Cup third-round win over Spurs, Wenger said: “Honestly, do we find better than the players that we have got?
“We still had Lukas Podolski and Mesut Ozil on the bench. Giroud was sick, he was not injured, so for the next game he should be available. Of course if we lose Theo for a longer period, it is a problem.”