LONDON, United Kingdom, Nov 28 – Arsenal are waiting to establish the full extent to the injury sustained by right-back Mathieu Debuchy during Sunday’s 3-1 victory over Bournemouth.
The 31-year-old, who has endured a long-running battle for fitness in recent seasons, was replaced by Gabriel after just 16 minutes of the Premier League tie having pulled a hamstring.
It was his first Gunners appearance since November 2015, after damaging ankle ligaments ahead of a dislocated shoulder, before losing his place in the side to Hector Bellerin – and subsequently being shipped out on loan to Bordeaux for a season.
But with Bellerin now injured, Wenger opted to play the former France international, who only played 70 minutes with the Arsenal Under-23s before taking part on Sunday.
After the game, where two goals from Alexis Sanchez and a third from Theo Walcott cancelled out a Callum Wilson penalty to secure the win, Wenger was not optimistic about Debuchy making a quick recovery.
He said: “He thinks it’s a severe one. I have to speak to medical people, but you can only assess it really after 48 hours. You have to let it bleed and after, usually they have an MRI 48 hours later to see how big the damage is.”
Wenger though revealed that he anticipated a potential problem for Debuchy, and made provisions for losing the player.
“When I picked the squad, I imagined that something could happen to Debuchy because he’s had many setbacks.
“He is devastated. He is such a great guy and puts such a commitment into his daily preparation.
“He started very well and was sharp. He did it on a backheel pass that is quite dangerous for the hamstring.”