• Francis Coquelin suffered a knee injury during Arsenal's 3-0 win over Chelsea.
  • Arsenal have a readymade replacement in Granit Xhaka if the injury is serious.

Arsenal are fearing the worst as they await results from the scan on Francis Coquelin's knee injury, which he sustained during the Gunners' 3-0 win over Chelsea on Saturday (24 September). The midfielder was replaced by Granit Xhaka in the 32<sup>nd minute and Arsene Wenger admitted that he was worried after the Frenchman left the stadium in a knee brace.

The 25-year-old midfielder, who has started five of Arsenal's six Premier League games thus far ahead of summer signing Xhaka, suffered the injury while performing a block tackle on N'Golo Kante. Initially it looked to be just a knock as Coquelin continued after treatment, but he pulled up and collapsed on the turf just two minutes later.

The French manager confirmed that it was similar to an injury he suffered against West Bromwich Albion last season, which saw him miss two months. According to the Guardian, the Gunners fear that he has damaged his cruciate ligaments and could be out for at least a couple of months yet again.

Coquelin is expected to undergo further scans on Monday (26 September), but is certain to miss Arsenal's next two clashes against FC Basel in the Champions League and Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday (2 October) after which the clubs are on a two-week break as the players depart on international duty.

The Frenchman's absence will come as a big blow to the north London club as the midfielder was forming a strong partnership with Santi Cazorla at the heart of the midfield. However his absence will offer a chance for Xhaka to nail down a regular spot in the first-team after starting the last two league games on the bench.

Francis Coquelin
Francis Coquelin leaves the pitch after being injured during Arsenal's 3-0 win over Chelsea on Saturday, 24 September Getty

The Switzerland international joined Arsenal from Borussia Monchengladbach in a reported £35m ($45.4m) deal this summer, but the big money signing is yet to establish himself as a regular starter. Wenger has preferred to stick with the already established partnership of Cazorla & Coquelin with Xhaka coming off the bench.