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Another Arsenal Defensive Injury….

Arsene Wenger is growing increasing cautious with his young players after yet another injury sustained during the Gunners 0-1 victory over Marseille last night…

Arsene Wenger described Arsenal’s latest Champions League victory in France against Marseille as “a little step forward.” His side were clearly not at their cutting, fluid best, but away from home, and following on from the poor domestic start to their season, beautiful football was hardly expected. However, there was an inevitability about one aspect of Arsenal’s game on Wednesday night – one certain particularity which was reluctantly expected by Arsenal fans, who have seen far too much of it of late.

An injury. Yes, a physical malfunction occurred once again within an Arsenal player, which gives the medical staff at the club yet another job to attend to. This time, it is Carl Jenkinson, Arsenal’s young summer signing fro Charlton. The 19 year-old may have helped Arsenal’s “step forward” with a clean sheet in France, but his step was hindered by a limp, as he was replaced by Johan Djourou in the 62nd minute.

The extent of the injury is, as yet, unknown, with Wenger declaring during his post match press conference: “It is a knee injury and no-one knows what he has.” Further analysis will of course be needed, and what with the injury list as it is; long and depressing, fans will be hoping the defender recovers swiftly. Having sold Emmanuel Eboue, experienced and reliable cover in that right-back position is looking scarce, which is a worry for the team.

Wenger has recently lost his first-choice in that position in Bacary Sagna to a very serious fractured fibula which means he will miss all action until 2012. Wilshere is in a similarly unfortunate injury position, and will miss most of the season, but players like Thomas Vermaelen and Kieran Gibbs who have both been out with varying problems will return within a few weeks.

Wenger is becoming weary of these tiresome injuries to his players, and feels that perhaps he can do something to prevent those such as Jack Wishere’s stress fracture (likely to be caused by being overplayed). He will attempt to rest the match winner, Aaron Ramsey, as much as possible so as to prevent fatigue in such a young player who recently recovered from the terrible broken leg he suffered a few years ago. He said:

“I do not want to overplay him. I’ve seen in my mind that he has been injured for a year and that Wilshere played a lot last year (and is now injured). I try to be a bit more cautious when I can.”

This “little step forward” that Wenger spoke cautiously of in his press conference is a positive one, but it may be a case of further steps backwards if the news on Jenkinson is negative. The Arsenal defence has already conceded 17 goals in just 8 Premier League games so far this season and another defensive absentee will not help those dreadful figures.

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