Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has suffered a significant injury blow as midfielder Francis Coquelin has been ruled out of Wednesday’s Capital One Cup clash with Tottenham.
Coquelin has emerged as a crucial component of the Arsenal midfield over the last year or so, and his ability to break up play and provide the defence with protection will undoubtedly be a big loss for Wenger.
The 24-year-old is being assessed by the club’s medical staff after coming off at half-time in the 2-0 loss to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, according to Sky Sports, although it is reported that his injury isn’t serious.
It had appeared as though it was merely a tactical switch after Gabriel was sent off following his altercation with Diego Costa, but it has been revealed that the Frenchman is suffering with an issue.
Although Coquelin’s absence is in itself a major setback for the Gunners, the lack of a direct replacement in the squad will undoubtedly make life more difficult for Wenger.
Mikel Arteta will be the man to step in and attempt to play that role on Wednesday night, although Wenger may even be forced into multiple changes with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also left on the bench at Stamford Bridge.
The Gunners were heavily criticised for their lack of transfer activity this summer, notably from Sky Sports pundit and former Manchester United ace Gary Neville, as reported by The Guardian, and if injuries continue to hit the squad then it may well come back to haunt Wenger.