Kieran Tierney is expected to miss the rest of the season in what is a huge blow for Arsenal and Scotland.
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Tierney, 24, didn’t play in Arsenal’s 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace on Monday and Mikel Arteta suggested it was a serious issue with his left knee.
Arsenal’s worst fears have been confirmed, as Kieran Tierney needs surgery and is ‘likely to miss the remainder of the season’ according to a statement released by the club.
Here are more details on a damaging blow for Arsenal and their top four hopes.
Huge blow for Arsenal
“Kieran felt discomfort after a training session on Thursday, March 31. Further assessments and scans have confirmed that Kieran has damaged his left knee. A specialist consultation took place on Tuesday, and as a result of further discussions with Kieran and our medical team, it has been decided that Kieran requires surgery to his knee. This procedure will take place in London in the forthcoming days.
“Kieran’s rehabilitation programme will start immediately after his surgery, at which stage a clearer understanding will be established on his recovery timescale. However, it is likely that Kieran will now miss the remainder of this season. Everyone at the club will now be supporting and working hard with Kieran to get him back on the pitch as soon as possible.”
How will this impact Arsenal’s top four hopes?
Arsenal missed their Scottish left back massively against Crystal Palace and his absence will leave a huge hole in their team.
Kieran Tierney’s ability to link defense with attack down the left flank is sensational and his leadership role is critical to their defensive unit. Arteta sees Tierney as a key part of setting the new culture he wants at Arsenal, so even off the pitch this is a massive blow to lose the Scotsman for the pivotal run-in.
Tierney’s stand-in Nuno Tavares looked uncomfortable at Crystal Palace and struggled defensively on Palace’s first two goals. Tavares is a decent back-up option but losing Tierney is a massive blow for Arsenal. You can’t sugarcoat it.
It could also impact Scotland’s chances of reaching the World Cup too, as Kieran Tierney is one of their most important players and is now in a race against time to be fit for their playoffs in June against Ukraine, and potentially Wales, to reach the 2022 World Cup.