Arsenal’s defensive injury woes returned on Wednesday night in the 1-1 draw with Everton, as Laurent Koscielny now faces a significant period on the sidelines.
The Frenchman was forced to come off the pitch after just four minutes as Arsene Wenger’s side played out a second successive draw in the Premier League.
The Gunners boss confirmed after the game that Koscielny has suffered an injury to his groin, so would be out of first team action until Christmas.
“He has a groin strain. That's usually three weeks,” he said.
It is not welcome news for Wenger ahead of the Christmas period - one of the most congested in the season - and will put even greater pressure on his stuttering side.
The Emirates Stadium side have been unable to capitalise on the 5-2 thrashing they handed out to local rivals Tottenham Hotspur there just under two weeks ago, as an uninspiring goalless draw at Aston Villa preceded this latest result.
Theo Walcott gave Arsenal the lead in last night’s match in under a minute, but sloppy defending handed Marouane Fellaini the chance to equalise half an hour later.
It was a fine 20-yard finish from the Belgian, about whom Wenger replied “yes” when asked if he thought he could do a job in north London, in the pre-match press conference.
The draw meant Wenger’s side stayed a point behind the Toffees and dropped three points Spurs into seventh, after Andre Villas-Boas’ side defeated Liverpool at White Hart Lane.