Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas will miss the rest of the Premier League season with a broken right leg, the London soccer club said.
Fabregas was injured in a collision with Barcelona defender Carles Puyol during last night’s 2-2 Champions League quarterfinal first-leg draw. The midfielder, who leads Arsenal with 19 goals, today underwent a scan that revealed a small crack in his right fibula.
“As a consequence, Cesc will miss the remainder of the domestic campaign as he will be out of action for at least six weeks,” Arsenal said in a statement on its Web site.
The loss of Fabregas is a blow to Arsenal in the race for the Premier League title. The Gunners are third in the standings, four points behind leader Manchester United and three behind Chelsea with six games remaining.
Fabregas passed a late fitness test before the Barcelona game and helped Arsenal rally from a 2-0 deficit. He left the stadium on crutches after scoring the tying goal with a penalty kick in the 85th minute after being fouled by Puyol, who received a red card for the challenge.
He may be back for the Champions League final if Arsenal is able to get past Barcelona and make it to Madrid for the May 22 match. He’s a member of the Spanish national squad, and may recover in time for the World Cup in South Africa, which starts June 11.
Midfielder Andrey Arshavin and defender William Gallas will both be sidelined for three weeks after picking up calf injuries last night. Defender Gael Clichy and midfielder Denilson may also miss this weekend’s home game against Wolverhampton Wanderers with back and groin problems, respectively.
“At the moment, we are like an army who have come back from a big battle,” manager Arsene Wenger said on the club’s Web site. “We have some bruises, but we need to recover and go on to the next battle.”