Arsenal's injury woes worsened during the international break after Arsene Wenger confirmed Laurent Koscielny has joined the absentee list ahead of their visit of Hull City.
Having already lost Mesut Ozil to a knee ligament injury there were immediate fears that international Koscielny was also facing a lengthy period out after the French football federation revealed the 29-year-old had been playing with damage to both his Achilles tendons for a number of weeks.
The Gunners boss has insisted the Frenchman is not facing surgery but will not have him available for the weekend along with Calum Chambers who is suspended after picking up five yellow cards.
"Ozil is out for at least six weeks. The positive news is Theo (Walott), Serge (Gnabry), and Mikel (Arteta) are back in the squad," Wenger said during a press conference.
"Koscielny will not be available with an Achilles problem. He is not in contention for Saturday, but he will not need to have surgery," said Wenger.
In Koscielny and Chambers' absence, Wenger has just one fit centre half in Per Mertesacker at his disposal. 19-year-old Issac Hayden, whose only other appearance this season came in the League Cup defeat to Southampton, may be called upon to deputise with Spanish youngster Hector Bellerin, who is expected to fill in at right back.
Tomas Rosicky also returned to north London with an injury suffered on international duty with the Czech Republic. However, the 34-year-old has been passed fit for Saturday, thankfully for Wenger who is still without Aaron Ramsey, who is expected to feature in next week's Champions League clash with Anderlecht.
"Ramsey will be back in full training on Monday and will be in the squad for Anderlecht. Rosicky came back with a kick on the calf but he should be available for Saturday," said Wenger.