11th May 2016: Welbeck ruled out for nine months + Xhaka deal reportedly close

Welcome to Wednesday on TremendArse. Arsenal have confirmed Danny Welbeck will undergo surgery on the knee injury he sustained at Manchester City last Sunday, and will be side-lined for ‘approximately nine months’.

After yesterday’s report in the Guardian, we were all fearing the worst yet hoping for the best. The reality now is that Danny faces having almost another full season written off when you factor in regaining match-sharpness after his recovery, and that’s assuming his rehabilitation goes smoothly. Here’s what the club said in a statement on the official site:

Specialists determined surgery was required after scans and tests revealed significant cartilage damage. The 25-year-old was injured during Sunday’s match at Manchester City. Danny will miss the Euro 2016 Championship in the summer and his full recovery is expected to take approximately nine months. Since returning to action in February after injuring his left knee in May last year, Welbeck’s impact has been telling – scoring five times, including the recent winner against Norwich City at Emirates Stadium. Everyone at Arsenal will be working hard with Danny throughout his recovery and look forward to seeing him back on the pitch as soon as possible.

It’s devastating news both for player and club obviously and for an insight into just how highly regarded Welbeck is as a player and person, just take a look at some of the Twitter messages of support that have flooded in since the news was announced earlier today.

Regular readers will know much I rate the striker – which is a lot more than most fans, pundits and rival supporters seem to from experience. I was ecstatic when we signed him in the summer of 2014 and couldn’t quite believe Manchester United had let him go. Had he stayed injury-free since signing for us I think we may well have seen him develop to the extent that we’d already have the world class forward we all crave. Laugh if you like.

We’ll never know of course, but I was confidently expecting him to flourish in our style of play and given I think he has all the raw attributes, expected Arsene Wenger to maximise Welbeck’s potential just as the manager has with so many forwards in the past. Fortunately, Danny doesn’t turn 26 until Novemeber so time is still on his side – enough to reach the level I think he’s capable of. Get well soon Welbz!

Onto more positive news and reports suggest Granit Xhaka will soon be a Gunner. As happy as I am we’re signing a very highly-rated central midfielder, I’m still struggling to work out what the manager’s starting selection in the middle of the park will look like come the start of next season. Time will tell of course but getting a big deal done so early augurs very well for the rest of our summer in the transfer market.

A very brief post this evening I’m afraid but that’s where I’ll leave it.

Until tomorrow.

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