There were distressing scenes during the course of Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Sporting Lisbon on Thursday night as the Gunners’ Danny Welbeck suffered a nasty ankle injury that left him needing oxygen.
Welbeck has long been Arsenal’s go to man on Europa League nights, scoring five goals in his past 13 appearances in the competition, but he looks set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines after landing on his ankle awkwardly.
The injury is the latest in a long line for a player who seems to enjoy very little luck when it comes to his fitness and several of his Arsenal teammates were clearly distressed as the England forward left the field on a stretcher.
The potential absence of Welbeck leaves Arsenal short of options in the attacking third of the pitch as Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remain the only genuine forwards in the squad, although it remains to be seen whether the Gunners hierarchy hand manager Unai Emery funds to sign new players during the January transfer window.
The Sun have reported that Lille winger, Nicolas Pepe, has hinted that he is ready to leave France and has admitted to being flattered by rumours linking him with a move to The Emirates.Should be signing be made it would go a long way in fixing a very nagging problem that Unai Emery has. The Spaniard does not have a player who likes to run with the ball at his feet apart from Alex Iwobi.
Oxlade Chamberlain was the other who could offer such qualities but the winger was sold to Liverpool last season. Danny Welbeck does love to run with the ball but he doesn’t have perfect close control and even more so will be out for a long period after his horrific injury on Thursday.
Unai Emery knows that he needs a winger, one who will run with the ball at his feet and score goals while at it, Nicolas Pepe will most likely be that man! The Ivorian winger has all the attributes to follow his fellow countryman Didier Drogba and become a legend in London. He has already scored 8 goals and made five more for his teammates and is only 23 years old.