Arsene Wenger admits Arsenal's injury crisis has given the Gunners' rivals the edge in this year's title race.
The Gunners halted a streak of three straight domestic losses with a 2-0 victory over Stoke at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday. The win came at a price though as William Gallas (hamstring), Emmanuel Eboue (muscle), Armand Traore (hamstring), Andrey Arshavin (ankle) and Tomas Rosicky (groin) all picked up injuries during the match.
"We pick up more injuries than the other big teams, that is true. You cannot say there is not a reason for it but we have not found it yet." Wenger said.
"It's the worst season for injuries for us. And they are all in the same area - in the offensive side. Last year it was in the defensive side."
Czech Republic midfielder Rosicky's injury was a particularly cruel twist to the 29-year-old's season.
Before the season began, the £6.7million signing had spent the previous 18 months sidelined with a series of knee and hamstring injuries.
Rosicky has struggled to regain his fitness and has been a bit-part player in his 13 appearances.
It is likely that Wenger will now have to do without the former Sparta Prague player for up to a month.
"He's devastated and I am as well," Wenger said. "It's a vicious circle when you have been out for a long time. Eduardo had not played for 18 months, Tomas has not played for 18 months," the 60 year old said.
"When you come back, one or two games, your body has to get used to producing the energy levels again and it's difficult. Nobody masters that."
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