Arsene Wenger reveals Jack Wilshere will be out for LONGER than six weeks
11:01 07 March 2014
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Injured Jack Wilshere will not return until Arsenal’s final two games of the season with manager Arsene Wenger admitting it will be eight weeks rather than six before the midfielder is match ready.
The Gunners were dealt a huge blow yesterday when it was announced that the England international had suffered a hairline fracture in his foot after a tackle from Liverpool defender Daniel Agger during the 1-0 win over Denmark at Wembley on Wednesday night.
The initial prognosis was six weeks but Wenger has revealed that Wilshere will need an extra fortnight to be fit enough for action. That will mean the 22-year-old will not be ready until the penultimate game of the Premier League season against West Brom at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday, May 3.
Wenger said: “There are 11 weeks [of the season] to go. He will be out for six weeks before he can absorb normal training.
“His injury will not stop him working on his fitness. Two weeks after, he should be competitive.
“That means the maximum, [for him] to be competitive to play in a game [is] eight weeks.”
The manager admitted that Wilshere’s latest setback has hit the youngster hard.
“You can only be very down in a situation like that, especially in the first days,” he said, adding: “He’s in a boot. He’s gone away for a few days to get away from trouble, disappointment and think about something else.”
Wenger added: “It’s certainly very difficult when you are his age. You want to play, get up in the morning, get out of bed and go on the football pitch and play.
“When you’re not capable to do that, without any restriction, it’s difficult mentally.
“Certainly, it has a weight on his mind and I hope that’s his last accident for a long, long time.”
Wilshere’s fledgling career has been plagued by injuries and a stress fracture to the other ankle, sustained in 2011 pre-season action, kept him out for 14 months.
Wenger said: “It is [another setback], yes, but it was an accident on a good ankle.”
The Gunners ace was left stricken on the Wembley turf but peeled himself off the ground to play on until the 59th minute and initially suggested, in interviews after the game, that he’d be fit to face Everton in the FA Cup quarter final on Saturday.
A scan 24 hours later revealed the extent of the damage was rather more serious but Wenger lays no blame at the door of Liverpool centre back Agger for the challenge on Wilshere.
“The tackle was strong but I think he [Agger] wanted to go for the ball,” he said.
There had been some concern that Wilshere was allowed to play on after receiving medical treatment on the pitch, but Wenger revealed the decision at that stage was down to the player.
“[It’s] the pain of the player that gives you the indication. You always trust the players.
“Sometimes you give him a few minutes, when a guy has been touched like that, to tell you how he feels.
“We are not at the point where you can make an instant check-up with an X-ray to see how big the damage is.”
Laurent Koscielny will assessed ahead of Saturday’s visit of Everton in the FA Cup after the centre back suffered a hamstring injury while on international duty with France.
“We have a doubt about Koscielny who has come back with a hamstring [problem] and didn’t play for France,” Wenger said.
“His scan is clear and we have to test him today.
“All the other players came back in good shape.
“Aaron Ramsey is one week away and I think the next two games are too soon, but the weekend after he should be available. Kim Kallstrom as well.”