Arsenal midfielder Santi Carzola will miss action for three months. The 31-year-old will undergo an ankle surgery to the plantaris tendon on his right foot. This will be a massive blow to the Gunners’ title hopes this season.
The Spaniard will travel to Sweden next week for the operation. The player has been unable to recover from his inflamed Achilles after spending time with the club’s medical staff.
“Santi Cazorla is travelling to Sweden early next week to undergo surgery to his right ankle.The club’s medical team and specialists have decided that surgery is required to the plantaris tendon in the Spain international’s right foot.” Arsenal’s official website reported.
Carzola has already been absent for six weeks since picking up the injury in Arsenal’s 6-0 Champions League victory over Ludogorets Razgrad on October 19, 2016. Manager Arsene Wenger initially hoped that the player will be out of action for a couple of weeks.
However, after Arsenal suffered defeat against Southampton in the EFL Cup, Wenger admitted that he was unsure about the midfielder’s return. Carzola later visited a specialist regarding the inflammation who suggested a surgery to fix the issue, as reported by ESPN.
Missing Carzola is a huge blow to Arsenal’s title hopes this season. Arsenal’s midfield has struggled to cope with the player’s absence. Since the injury, the Gunners have drawn three times and won only twice, according to The Guardian.
Arsenal’s possession-based gameplay centers around Santi Carzola’s quick passing. The player serves as a link between the defense and the attack. Wenger has been unable to find a suitable replacement since the player’s absence.
“He’s important to our technical stability in the team, to the quality of our decision-making and to our build-up from deep midfield to the high midfield” Wenger said after his side’s 3-1 win against Bournemouth last Sunday.
Santi Carzola’s influence at Arsenal
Video courtesy: YouTube.com/GAEBBA
Wenger has tried several midfield combinations between Francis Coquelin, Aaron Ramsey, Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny. However, none have been able to live up to the Spaniard’s standard.
Carzola has scored two goals in 11 appearances for Arsenal this season. Both of those goals were scored against Watford and Southampton in the Premier League, as reported by Sky Sports.
This is not the first time when the Spain international will be sidelined for a long time due to an injury. The player missed seven months of action last season because of a knee injury, according to BBC.
Photo courtesy: Ronnie Macdonald/Flickr