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Arsenal's Lacazette Out For 6 Weeks With Knee Injury

15 February 2018

Aaron Ramsey appears to be facing a race against time to be fit for the Carabao Cup final showdown with Manchester City on 25 February after being ruled out of both of Arsenal's Europa League last-32 matches against Swedish minnows Ostersunds FK.

But they may yet have to look around for a new manager and the club's new structure with head of recruitment Sven Mislintat having a big say will leave them in a position to go for big names. But it is understood he has known about the problem for a while, and a club spokesman said: "He will return to the squad within four to six weeks".

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is now Arsenal's first choice striker and has pushed summer signing Alexandre Lacazette to the bench and restricted his starting opportunities to the cups and Europa League, of which Arsenal are still competing in only the latter. "Maybe as well that's an explanation why he was not scoring as many goals as he's used to", continued Wenger.

Wenger's proud 19-year record of qualifying for the Champions League ended last term when they only finished fifth in the Premier League.

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Wenger admits it is hugely frustrating to be without Aubameyang, who can not play because former club Borussia Dortmund have dropped down into the competition after finishing third in its UEFA Champions League group.

Ostersund was also a surprise second place team in a group with Hertha Berlin, Zorya Luhansk, and group-winning Athletic Bilbao, and did not lose at home.

However, Wenger was downbeat when asked about the groin injury that ruled Ramsey out of Saturday's 1-0 derby loss at Tottenham.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is free to play in the competition but will have to wear the number 77 shirt as Alexis Sanchez had already worn the number 7 shirt earlier in the competition. The club was only founded in 1996, some 30 days after Arsene Wenger's appointment as Arsenal manager.

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"Of course you have heard about Lacazette", he said.

The Gunners have struggled to find consistent form in the top flight this season and now find themselves significantly off the pace in the race for Champions League qualification.

Wenger could yet be accused of being ill-prepared for the threat of Ostersund, a side who came into existence one month after he took the reins at Arsenal in 1996.

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Arsenal's Lacazette Out For 6 Weeks With Knee Injury