By Dr Billy “The Dog” McGraw. Physician to anyone who wants an opinion.
Where are we on the injury front? I must admit it is getting a bit confusing all round, as I found in a debate yesterday where two of us struggled to complete the full set of details on who is in and who isn’t. So here’s the best chart I can do so far…
Long term injuries
- Mesut Ozil
- Mathieu Debuchy
- Olivier Giroud – although poised to come back sooner than we thought. December?
- Laurent Koscielny (situation unclear)
- David Ospina (situation unclear)
Koscielny’s injury is a self-reporting one – he says his Achilles is hurting but he’s not in a position for the medics to say this date or that date for a recovery time.
What Laurent appears to have is Achilles tendonitis = which is an inflammation and is typically short-lived. But it can turn into something worse, (Achilles tendonosis) if not handled properly. However it shouldn’t go that way, as long as he’s careful.
It is what we doctors call an “overuse” disorder, caused by a repetitive activity involving the Achilles tendon – which of course is what footballers get. Ongoing stress on the tendon means the body can’t repair the tissue, the structure of the tendon is then altered, and there is pain, which is nature’s way of telling you to stop running around and sit down.
So Laurent could be back any time – he just has to wait until it stops hurting.
Ospina’s situation is not clear, but he will not be playing against Anderlecht it seems. Which means Martinez in goal, and maybe Ryan Huddart of the under 21s on the bench.
- Yaya Sanogo – should be ready any time soon.
- Isaac Hayden – an ankle injury, but not details available.
Recovering and just on ready
- Theo Walcott – everything depends on how his body reacts after a long lay off, and the most likely use of Theo for a while is going to be coming on as a sub in a game where he is not going to be targeted for a kicking.
Theo played 45 minutes for the Under-21s against Blackburn – his first game in nine months after injuring his anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. His view was “I got through fine. I need to be patient with myself. It is important to recover. I need to be patient. The manager will choose to play me when he wants – the injury needs to be managed as well.”
- Serge Gnabry – the situation is the same as for Theo, except that as a younger player he can try to do too much too quickly and hurt himself. Youngsters showing that they are the players that the team has been missing all this time, can do themselves more harm because of that lack of psychological adjustment.
Both players need to be brought in according to their mental and physical condition.
- Abou Diaby also played 67 minutes in the under 21 game, where he has been slowly building up his strength. It is hard to know when he will be ready for a return to the first team.
Back and ready
- Aaron Ramsey
- Mikel Arteta
- Nacho Monreal
- Tomas Rosicky
- Jack Wilshere. It looked like a self-destructive lunge against Hull that sent him straight down the tunnel, but it seems he’s ok, so could well play against Anderlecht – and certainly for next weekend.
- Hector Bellerin – what a superb player to have coming through from the youth team. Absolutely magnificent potential. What he needs is games, and with this injury run on-going I guess he is going to get them.
Overall this means we are without
- Mesut Ozil
- Mathieu Debuchy
- Olivier Giroud
- Laurent Koscielny
- David Ospina
- Yaya Sanogo
- Isaac Hayden
With the bottom four on the list due back any time soon.
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