Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Jack Wilshere suffered an ankle injury during Arsenal's disappointing defeat to Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night and worryingly appeared to admit that he does not know how bad the problem is at this stage.
The Gunners - who have won just once in four domestic games so far this season - got their Champions League campaign off to a dismal start at Signal Iduna Park, with goals either side of half-time from Ciro Immobile and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang securing a comfortable victory for Jurgen Kopp's Bundesliga title hopefuls.
In truth, the 2-0 scoreline flattered Arsenal and to make matters considerably worse midfielder Wilshere appeared to jolt his ankle as the clock ticked down to the end of a thoroughly miserable 90 minutes.
Now, usually such a twist would not cause too much concern, but when you consider how many months of action the 22-year-old has missed in recent years due to problems with that very same joint, it suddenly becomes a major worry.
"Wilshere has turned his ankle. It’s difficult to say how bad it is," Wenger said in an interview that was brought to our attention by The Mirror.
Indeed, the Frenchman himself - who has been keen to notably eager to safeguard the brittle Wilshere against any further injury setbacks - admitted that he has to be cautious with any sort of premature diagnosis given the player's past ankle issues.
“I’m a bit cautious because of his history. Normally it’s not too bad," he added.
Wilshere's injury is certainly not ideal for Arsenal, with Wenger already missing several key first-team players.
Mathieu Debuchy is expected to join compatriot Olivier Giroud on the sidelines until January after sustaining ankle ligament damage during the Gunners' 2-2 draw with Premier League champions Manchester City on Saturday and Calum Chambers was only fit enough to be named as a substitute last night after battling tonsillitis.
Those particular absences - along with Nacho Monreal's back injury - forced Wenger to hand young Spaniard Hector Bellerin his first senior start for Arsenal in Dortmund, while Yaya Sanogo also missed out with a hamstring strain.
Next up for Arsenal is a potentially tricky trip to in-form Aston Villa on Saturday afternoon. Wilshere is very unlikely to recover in time for that particular match and Wenger will be hoping he will not also miss the North London derby against fierce rivals Tottenham a week later.