Oxlade-Chamberlain blow for Arsenal

20 August 2013 03:05

England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be 'out for a while' because of a knee injury, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has confirmed.

The 20-year-old - who has become a key part of Roy Hodgson's squad for the 2014 World Cup qualifiers - limped out of the Gunners' 3-1 home defeat by Aston Villa on the opening day of the new Barclays Premier League season and reports have suggested he could be set for up to six months on the sidelines.

While Wenger did not give any timescale on the player's recovery when he gave some team news to the club's official website, ahead of travelling to Istanbul for the Champions League play-off first leg against Fenerbahce on Wednesday, the prognosis is not positive.

"The difference from Saturday is that Oxlade-Chamberlain is out for a while with a knee problem," Wenger said on Arsenal Player.

There was, though, better news on Bacary Sagna, Kieran Gibbs, Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere and Tomas Rosicky, all of whom trained on Tuesday morning, as did defender Nacho Monreal, who has been out with a back problem.

There had been fears over the fitness of those individuals, especially full-back Sagna, who landed awkwardly towards the end of the game on Saturday, but they could all play some part in Turkey as Arsenal look to seal a place in the lucrative group stages of the Champions League.

"Everybody else should make it. There's a final decision (on Wednesday) but Sagna and Gibbs should be available," said Wenger.

"Nacho Monreal is back and will travel."

Wenger admitted following Saturday's defeat, when his side were booed off the pitch at full-time, how the players respond will shape their season.

Taking on Fenerbahce in the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium will certainly prove a test of character, but Wenger is confident it is one which Arsenal can pass.

Source: PA