Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 December 2014

Djourou out for rest of season

Johan Djourou
Johan Djourou

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has confirmed defender Johan Djourou will miss the remainder of the season after suffering a dislocated shoulder in Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final defeat to Manchester United.

Djourou suffered the injury in a collision with team-mate Bacary Sagna in the latter stages of the 2-0 loss.

"Unfortunately we lost Johan Djourou for the rest of the season," Wenger said. "Dislocated shoulder. Season over."

Djourou's injury was a gloomy postscript to a shattering fortnight for Arsenal.

Two weeks ago Gunners supporters were talking optimistically of an unprecedented quadruple. Defeats to Birmingham and Barcelona in the Carling Cup final and Champions League respectively wrecked that dream, and goals from Fabio and Wayne Rooney either side of the break at Old Trafford now leave Arsenal with only the Premier League title to play for.

"I cannot fault our effort but things do not go our way at present," Wenger said. "We have lost three big challenges in a strange way. One in the last minute with a goal from nowhere, one under very strange circumstances in Barcelona and here in a match where we were not outplayed but were punished by a team that was more clinical than us."

Wenger is trying to maintain an air of positivity but felt the hangover from the disappointment of Tuesday's defeat at the Nou Camp was still present in too many of his players' performances.

"Subconsciously I feel the disappointment of Tuesday played a part in the game," he said. "You could see something has gone, not in our effort or attitude, but confidence-wise.

"But I don't feel like the season is slipping away. I believe we can do it. It is a good test for us now to show we can regroup and show the mental strength and togetherness quickly.

"We will have to answer this kind of question in the next two or three weeks. We have to show we have an answer. We are used to being questioned. We have to show we are strong enough to deal with it."

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