Arsenal beat Stoke but Walcott out of League Cup final

Arsenal gained a further three points in their quest for the Premier League title with a solid 1-0 win over Stoke City, but their joy was tempered by the news that winger Theo Walcott would be out of Sunday’s League Cup final against Birmingham City.

Theo Walcott - Carried off

The Gunners won thanks to an early goal from French defender Sebastien Squillaci, heading home a Nicklas Bendtner cross and moving Arsene Wenger’s side to within a point of league leaders Manchester United.

However, the injury to Walcott will have tarnished the evening, whilst Gunners skipper Cesc Fabregas also went off before half-time with a hamstring injury, although his withdrawal is believed to be more of a precaution.

Concerning the injury sustained by Walcott, who has 11 goals for the club so far this season, Gunners boss Wenger said: “It is an ankle sprain – he  is out of the next game for sure.”

Furthermore, regarding Fabregas, Wenger was uncertain whether his captain would be fit for the trip to Wembley on Sunday.

“Fabregas has a hamstring problem – We will assess that tomorrow” added Wenger.

“It is impossible to see how serious it is tonight. We will know tomorrow.

“It’s a concern that Cesc is injured but it happens unfortunately. He was very upset. I am as well. But it is not his fault or mine. It is part of sport.”

With the club fighting on four fronts for trophies this season, and having been missing Robin van Persie through injury tonight, the Gunners can scarcely afford to have injury problems robbing them of their key players between now and the end of the season.

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About AA_Richards

Football writer & all-round pen for hire. Can tiki-taka or counter-attack at pace. Differentiates Athletic from Atletico. Follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/AA_Richards
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