Arsenal midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles sidelined for up to eight weeks

  •  PA Sport

Midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles has suffered a “small fracture” to his left leg and will be out for six to eight weeks, Arsenal have announced.

Maitland-Niles had been expected to be a regular in the first-team squad this season following a promising previous campaign.

Those chances were boosted even more with injuries and fitness doubts over the heads of left-backs Sead Kolasinac and Nacho Monreal.

Despite not being a natural left-back, Maitland-Niles did play their numerous times throughout last season, in particular in the Europa League, and new manager Unai Emery showed faith in him in that position once again on Sunday.

However, after suffering the injury during the first half of the opening Premier League match against Manchester City, Maitland-Niles could now be set for up to two months of rehabilitation.

The 20-year-old suffered the injury in a challenge with Kyle Walker and despite trying to play on, he was eventually substituted for Stephan Lichtsteiner after 35 minutes.

The fact that the youngster tried to carry on despite fracturing his leg is something that a lot of Arsenal fans, and football fans in general, have picked up on on Twitter this morning.

Arsenal lost 2-0 against champions City in new head coach Unai Emery’s first league game in charge.

The Gunners head to Chelsea on Saturday, and provided an injury update on Thursday morning, ahead of Emery’s scheduled press conference.

“Ainsley has sustained a small fracture to his left fibula and will be out for six to eight weeks,” Arsenal said on the club’s official website.

There was, though, also positive news as Arsenal reported left-back Monreal and Danny Welbeck were both in full training, so should come into contention for the trip to Stamford Bridge.

Defender Carl Jenkinson is, however, also expected to be out for six to eight weeks after he “sustained a significant sprain to his right ankle”, Arsenal confirmed, which is likely to mean the player will not be leaving on loan to a Sky Bet Championship club.

Kolasinac should return to training from his knee problem in October, while club captain Laurent Koscielny continues his recovery from Achilles surgery.

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