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Mikel Arteta out at least two weeks with sprained ankle, will miss Besiktas clash


As soon as the tackle from Demba Ba came in things looked bleak. Writhing in pain, Mikel Arteta looked as if he might headline the next chapter in Arsenal’s injury horror novel.

Ligament damage was the natural fear but in a bittersweet gift the Arsenal medical team has announced that Arteta has merely suffered a badly sprained ankle. ‘Merely’ is the silver lining, of course, because in the short term Arteta’s knock is a major blow for the Gunners.

The Spanish midfielder won’t take part in Saturday’s clash with Everton, joining Theo Walcott, Serge Gnabry, Kieran Gibbs and (possibly) Yaya Sanogo on the trainer’s table. Worse yet, Arteta has been ruled out for the second leg of the Champions League play-off against Besiktas next Wednesday where, alongside the suspended Aaron Ramsey, he will endure 90 minutes of anxiety from the stands.

Arteta’s status means that Jack Wilshere and Mathieu Flamini will be the holding midfield partnership against the Turks, with the Italian midfielder replacing Arteta on Tuesday following his injury. Further buttressing the Arsenal lineup will be Mesut Ozil, Per Mertesacker and Lukas Podolski, all of whom are slated to return to the side following their World Cup break. Neither of the Germans will help the defensive side of the midfield, however, an area that many believed Wenger would strengthen over the summer with links to Sami Khedira or William Carvalho persisting throughout.

Arsenal nevertheless remain upbeat about their Champions League future with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain championing the positivity:

“We almost expect ourselves to qualify. It’s something we worked extremely hard for at the end of last season, to get ourselves into this position, and we don’t want to give it away at this stage. It is massive for us as a club, and as players and the fans. I’m sure you’ll see next week how much everyone wants to be a part of this competition.

“We definitely have to have confidence in ourselves to come through this test. Besiktas are a quality side and it’s not going to be easy at all. They’ll fancy their chances as well and a goalless draw does make our task that little bit harder back at the Emirates Stadium. But I’m confident, if we approach it in the right way and match them physically and competitively, that the technical side of our game will come through.”

The Gunners take on Everton at Goodison Park this Saturday at 12:30pm ET on NBC.

Report: David Silva out 2-3 weeks with ligament damage

LOGRONO, SPAIN - OCTOBER 09:  David Silva of Spain is fouled by Lars Gerson of Luxembourg during the UEFA EURO 2016 Qualifier group C match between Spain and Luxembourg at Estadio Municipal Las Gaunas on October 9, 2015 in Logrono, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
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Despite sitting at the top of the table in the Premier League, things are not going well for Manchester City.

Star striker and leading goalscorer Sergio Aguero suffered a torn hamstring while playing for Argentina, and now he is joined by David Silva on the injured list.

Silva lasted nine minutes in Spain’s EURO qualifying match against Luxembourg, forced off after taking a bad challenge from behind. Silva went down in pain and tried to play on, but asked for a substitution just minutes later.

[ RELATED: Alejandro Bedoya to miss USMNT vs. Mexico ]

Spanish news outlet AS is reporting that Silva has suffered “lateral internal ligament damage in his right ankle,” and could face 2-3 weeks on the sidelines.

With Aguero set to miss at least a month, Silva’s injury could leave Manchester City without two of their top players in the coming weeks.

Silva has arguably been the best player in the Premier League this season, the quarterback of the City attack, which has scored a league-leading 19 goals through eight matches.

City travels to Old Trafford for the Manchester derby on October 25, which falls into that 2-3 week range for Silva’s recovery. In a match that could decide who sits top of the table, Manuel Pellegrini would be very shorthanded without Silva and Aguero.

Alejandro Bedoya to miss USMNT vs. Mexico

GLASGOW,  SCOTLAND - NOVEMBER 15 :  Alejandro Bedoya of USA  in action during the International Friendly match between Scotland and USA at Hampden Park on November 15, 2013.  (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)
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Alejandro Bedoya will not feature for the United States in the CONCACAF playoff against Mexico on Saturday, and has been replaced on the roster by Bobby Wood.

Bedoya traveled to Los Angeles from his club team Nantes in France, but Jurgen Klinsmann has announced he will be unable to play after falling ill.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s USMNT coverage ]

Without Bedoya, Union Berlin midfielder Bobby Wood has been added to the USMNT side. Wood scored the first two goals of his international career this summer in wins over the Netherlands and Germany, and has scored four goals in ten matches for Union Berlin this season. Wood has been training with the U.S. camp throughout the week for the upcoming friendly against Costa Rica.

Bedoya has played well for the USMNT, discounting his short performance against Brazil in September. In that match, Klinsmann played Bedoya out of position against a potent Brazil attack, and he was substituted before halftime. However, playing in his more natural role as a winger or attacking midfielder, many believed Bedoya could be in line for a start against Mexico.