Arsenal have confirmed that Santi Cazorla will undergo ankle surgery next week and will be out for ‘approximately three months’.
The midfielder picked up the injury during the Champions League game with Ludogorets in October and has struggled to regain full fitness since.
“The club’s medical team and specialists have decided that surgery is required to the plantaris tendon in the Spain international’s right foot,” a statement read. “Everyone at the club will be working hard with Santi to make sure he’s back on the pitch as soon as possible.”
The midfielder would likely miss 14 rounds of Premier League matches if out for three months and would be struggling to get back in time for either leg of the Gunners’ Champions League second round tie.
“Approximately”… those are the words no Arsenal fan wants to hear in an injury update.
Given the club’s track-record, those three months could stretch into four or five. But even if Santi is back in time for the start of March, that still means he’ll have missed over a third of the season… which will be a major blow to Arsenal’s transfer hopes.
Cazorla is the undervalued heart of Arsene Wenger’s side, linking the team together and making a huge impact to their win percentage.
Since August 2015, Arsenal’s win percentage is down 20% whenever the Spaniard is out of the team. That’s a seriously big gap to be filled during the busiest time of the campaign.