LNTUP

The Arsenal Star Still Hopes To Make A Comeback After Having A Huge Injury Blow

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said the Achilles tendon injury suffered by Arsenal star player is ‘the worst injury I have known’.

The Spanish star almost lost his foot to gangrene after contracting a dangerous infection during his recovery from a serious injury that has resulted in him losing eight centimetres of tendon from his right ankle.

The 32-year-old has not played for Arsenal since October 2016 and Wenger described the midfielder’s ordeal as ‘horrific’.

Nonetheless, he hopes to include Cazorla in his squad for the second half of the season from January once he makes a full recovery.

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s home north London derby against Tottenham Hotspur, Wenger said: ‘It is the worst injury I have known.

‘It started with a pain on the Achilles and it has gone from worse to worse. I know how much Cazorla loves to play football and be out there every day and I really feel sorry for what has happened to him.

‘It is unbelievable. The last time I saw him was a month ago and I told him to prepare as well as he could and try to practise.

‘I hope he comes back in January. I left him out of the squad but hoping he will be available in January.’

Asked if there are fears Cazorla may never play football again, Wenger added: ‘I hope that you are wrong.’

In an emotional interview with the Spanish newspaper Marca earlier this month, Cazorla told of the devastation of suffering the injury and the long route to recovery.

A series of images showed in graphic detail the results of going under the knife eight times within the space of a year to fix his tendons.

One photo showed the skin graft which has left him with a section of tattooed skin from his left arm now covering his Achilles area.

Cazorla also revealed there was serious consideration as to whether they should amputate his foot after he contracted the potentially life-threatening infection.

Cazorla told Marca: ‘If you get to walk again with your son in the garden, be satisfied, they told me.’

‘He [Dr Mikel Sanchez] saw that I had a tremendous infection, that I had damaged part of the calcaneus bone and it had eaten the Achilles tendon. There was eight centimetres of it missing!

‘I do not have clearance until January, but I will come back by then.’

Cazorla is continuing his rehabilitation in his hometown of Salamanca but Arsene Wenger recently revealed that he is ready to welcome the diminutive playmaker back to his squad after the Christmas period.

He recently said: ‘The first signs are positive, but still he has not played for one and a half years.

‘He is not in full training yet, he needs a few games with the reserve team. So I think if all goes well, it will be after Christmas.’

Wenger confirmed Arsenal with be without striker Olivier Giroud for the match at the Emirates Stadium and Alex Iwobi will need a late fitness check after returning from international duty with Nigeria.

Danny Welbeck and Shkodran Mustafi will also need to be assessed on Friday, but Laurent Koscielny is expected to be fit after not playing for France against Germany on Tuesday night.