Arsenal set to lose another midfielder for up to 6 weeks

By on December 16, 2016

mohamed elneny arsenal 2016

Arsenal are set to lose Mohamed Elneny for up to six weeks after he was called up to the preliminary Egypt squad for the Africa Cup of Nations.

Elneny has been a regular for his country over the past few years with 46 caps to his name so far and was one of 11 overseas-based players to be named in Hector Cuper’s initial squad ahead of the tournament in Gabon next month.

The Egypt boss will need to trim his squad down but Elneny is certain to make the cut meaning the 24-year-old will link-up with his country at the start of January to prepare for the tournament’s kick off on the 14th.

Egypt are one of the dark horses this year so they are expected to make it out of their group, which also included Ghana, Uganda and Mali, which is only going to extend his absence form Arsenal duty.

Even if they crash out in the group stages, Elneny will miss at least four games against Preston [FA Cup], Swansea, Burnley and Watford but if they progress then he could also miss further games against Chelsea as well as a possible FA Cup fourth round tie.

Obviously Elneny isn’t a first team regular but with Santi Cazorla out until late February and Aaron Ramsey’s continued injury problems, we’ll be severely lacking in midfield options during January.

Elneny would almost certainly have played in the FA Cup games had he been available while any suspensions or injuries to Granit Xhaka or Francis Coquelin will leave us down to the bare bones in the middle of the park.

Let’s hope Ramsey can get himself fit soon and steer clear of any more injuries over the next couple of months.

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