Arsenal are faced with a crisis up front with Theo Walcott reported to be out for up to one month with knee ligament damage after the England international was forced off the field on a stretcher in their FA Cup third round win over Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates.
The Telegraph reports that a scan will be done on Monday to confirm the damage but initial signs do not look good for the Gunners. The north London club are already without Olivier Giroud and Nicklas Bendtner and have not seen much of Yaya Sanogo either throughout this season.
Walcott has been in brilliant form since his return from injury, scoring five goals in five appearances in the league and will be a major miss should he be unavailable for the rest of the month.
Arsene Wenger has been linked with a lot of strikers and in spite of the Frenchman not too keen on splashing the cash in winter, Walcott's long term injury may force his hand as he looks to win Arsenal's first league title in over a decade.
The Gunners have been linked with a loan move for Real Madrid frontman Alvaro Morata and are also keeping their options open for a possible swoop for Fulham striker Dimitar Berbatov, who has openly expressed a desire to move out of the relegation threatened club.
The Gunners have a comparatively easy run of fixtures coming up, with games against Aston Villa, Fulham, Southampton and Crystal Palace along with a home game against Coventry City in the fourth round of the FA Cup.
However, their real test begins in February when they have to travel to Anfield and also face Manchester United at the Emirates coupled with a Champions League clash against Bayern Munich at the Emirates.
Should Arsenal manage to tide over this period as the league toppers, they will be favourites for the title, with comparatively easier games against lower placed opposition lined up at the end of the season.