Arsenal and France defender Laurent Koscielny will be out for six months after surgery on a ruptured Achilles tendon, says Gunners manager Arsene Wenger.
Koscielny, 32, was carried off 12 minutes into Arsenal’s Europa League semi-final second leg defeat by Atletico Madrid last Thursday.
France manager Didier Deschamps had already confirmed the center-back would miss this summer’s World Cup.
“You will not see him until December at best,” said Wenger.
“Koscielny is devastated. People have always inflamed tendons but they don’t rupture but in his case it went. I don’t know why.
“The recovery will be full because the advantage of surgery is that it heals the inflammation.”
And Wenger fears the 32-year-old will miss the first three months of next season as well.
Speaking ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Leicester City, he told a news conference: “He is devastated because he has surgery that means six months out. You will not see him again before December certainly.”
Asked if Koscielny was struggling to cope with the enormity of missing the World Cup, due to be his final international tournament after already announcing he was going to retire from Les Bleus duty following Russia 2018, Wenger added: “We always try to be positive, you know, but overall you can only try to support people when they suffer, because they do suffer from a situation like this.
“What is unusual in this case is that he had tendonitis for a while and it doesn’t usually go to a rupture. That is a bit surprising in this case. When inflamed it doesn’t always go to rupture, but it did – I don’t know why.”