Football Football

Wilshere set for February return, Norwich win


LONDON, England, September 27- England and Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has undergone a successful operation on his right ankle but could be out for up to five months, the Premier League giants announced on Monday.

The 19-year-old suffered a stress fracture to his right ankle in a pre-season friendly against the New York Red Bulls.

“The initial indications are that the surgery has been successful and Jack will now undergo a prolonged period of rehabilitation. It is envisaged that Jack’s rehabilitation will take a period of four to five months,” the team said in a statement.

Wilshere added: “I’ve had my operation this morning and all went well. My ankle is little bit sore, but I’m already looking forward to working hard to get fit and playing again.

“I would also just like to say thanks for the many messages of support I have received from you – the fantastic Arsenal supporters. See you all soon at the Emirates.”

The news will add further pressure on Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as his side have made a dreadful start to the Premier League campaign after struggling to overcome the departures of Samir Nasri and captain Cesc Fabregas.

Meanwhile, Norwich showed they are settling down in the Premier League here on Monday after recording their second successive win in beating Sunderland 2-1.

Goals by Leon Barnett and Steve Morison gave the hosts a 2-0 lead before Black Cats midfielder Kieran Richardson scored late on to give the home fans some nervy moments.

However, the Canaries held on to move to ninth in the table while defeat meant further misery for Norwich’s former captain Steve Bruce as the Sunderland handler sees his side lying just a point above the bottom three.

Both the Norwich goals were helped by poor Sunderland defending, an unmarked Barnett striking from six yards out in the first-half and then Morison rose above a static Wes Brown to head home early in the second-half.

Norwich manager Paul Lambert – who has worked a miracle with the team in his two years at the club gaining them successive promotions – was delighted with their first home win of the campaign.

“Winning last week at Bolton was important and a first win at home is a big step too,” said the 42-year-old Scot, who won the Champions League as a player with Borussia Dortmund in 1997.

“We’re new to this league but we are learning and playing well.”

Bruce, who drastically revamped the squad during the close season but lost key players such as Jordan Henderson and Asamoah Gyan, was underwhelmed with his players performance.

“Overall I’m disappointed with them (the players),” he said.

“It was always going to be difficult tonight (Monday), a night when we needed to play well to get something. But we didn’t.

“The performance of a lot of players was under-par.”