Wilshere Injury Worse Than Feared, Maybe

Please don't be so fragile - Shaun Botterill

In "because of course" news, Jack Wilshere's ankle injury is now expected to keep him out for...six weeks? Ish? Maybe?

Every good news comes with bad news. Every work bonus gets a chunk taken out for taxes, every new house comes with a yard that needs a ton of work, and every Arsenal step forward seems to come with at least one step back.

Today's step back is the news that Jack Wilshere's ankle injury is more serious than first thought, and will probably keep him out for six weeks, which if that duration is true is most of the rest of the season. He injured the ankle in the North London Derby, and subsequently went to Dubai to see a specialist, which is where this diagnosis came from. The injury appears to be a recurrence of the injury to his right ankle that kept him out previously.

The problem with this story is the source. It's being reported on Goal.com, and basically repeated verbatim, quoting only Goal.com, by the Mirror and Metro. So, it should go without saying, but grains of salt for everyone - there is no doubt that Jack's injury is more serious than first thought, but those three sources are not exactly interested in medical rigor, and are more interested in stirring the pot. So, take the OUT FOR THE SEASON proclamations with a healthy dose of skepticism - he's out a while, but we don't know at this point if "a while" means an extra week more than the original 2-3 week diagnosis or whether, as the tabs would have us believe, Jack is on the surgeon's table awaiting amputation of a dying limb.

I am obviously not a professional athlete, but I have had ankle problems my whole life (I broke my ankle playing soccer when I was 22) and they are a massive pain - once you weaken an ankle through injury, it takes forever to get it strong again, and if you don't do your rehab and PT, it's even worse. That was my problem, I'm sure Jack will do all his rehab and whatnot, but ankles are notoriously fragile and this is worrisome because it could easily become a chronic problem.

So, a good chunk of the run-in will have to be Wilshere-less for Arsenal; this might mean more Rosicky, though, which isn't a bad thing. And before you chime in with I KNEW ARSENAL SHOULD HAVE NEVER SOLD ALEX SONG, remember that injuries can't be planned for; midfield is an area that needs some strengthening, sure, but it's not paper-thin and if Rosicky gets a run in the team I'm OK with that. Diaby's fit, too, but counting on that might be naive; still, Arsenal have cover at the moment, so while it's not ideal, I don't think it's panic time either.

So, best of luck healing up, Jack; don't push it, don't cut corners. We need you for next season.

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