Arsenal closed the gap at the top of the table to one point last night with a hard-fought victory against Stoke City.
But the win came at a cost with both Theo Walcott and Cesc Fabregas leaving the field injured.
The Gunners’ victory came courtesy of an eighth-minute header from defender Sebastien Squillaci – putting them within a point of league leaders Manchester United having played one game more.
However, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will now be without winger Theo Walcott for Sunday’s Carling Cup Final against Birmingham after the England international was injured during a challenge with Dean Whitehead.
Walcott was stretchered off with the ankle knock following the 50/50 challenge while influential captain Cesc Fabregas suffered a hamstring injury which will be assessed today.
Speaking after the match, Wenger said: “Walcott has an ankle sprain and he’s out, for how long I can’t tell you, but for Sunday he is definitely out.
“Fabregas has a hamstring problem but we will assess that tomorrow, tonight it is impossible to say how serious it is. We will know more about it tomorrow.”
The two injuries could potentially deal a major blow for Arsenal as they enter the business end of a season.
Arsenal are the only team to be competing for four trophies and face Birmingham City on Sunday in the Carling Cup Final followed by a midweek FA Cup replay against Leyton Orient and a weekend Premier League match against Sunderland.
They then have the daunting prospect of a trip to the Nou Camp to face Barcelona in the Champions League on March 8 – with the Spanish champs admitting to fearing Walcott and his fierce pace.