Arsenal’s medical staff acted correctly and followed their injury protocols when defender Jurrien Timber damaged his anterior cruciate ligament against Nottingham Forest.

Timber is now expected to miss the rest of the season with a long-term injury, and questions have been raised over Mikel Arteta and his medical staff about how he was allowed to continue in the second half of the match.

The defender initially picked up an injury in the first half and was cleared to continue before just lasting five minutes of the second half.

Speaking on Sky Sports News, journalist James Green has now shared insight from the Arsenal medical staff into Timber’s injury.

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“He’s due to have an operation in the next couple of days before starting and conducting his rehabilitation. Now before the press conference, I was speaking to the medical department here at Arsenal when they were giving me some clarity surrounding the injury,” he stated.

“Now, if you remember rightly on Saturday, Timber had the injury in the first half. They assessed him at halftime, but he still went out to play about five minutes of the second half before coming off. Now, there have been a few questions asked as to why Arsenal put him back out on the pitch if he had such a serious injury.

“Now the club say they went through all the processes, all the protocols on his knee. For Timber himself, he didn’t have any pain in his knee at all. And they decided as a group that he was fine to carry on. They said that ‘as soon as you have any discomfort going into the second half, let us know.’

“He still felt no pain. The player still wanted to continue, and it was down to the medical department to take him off. And what they’ve told me is that Timber walked away. He was still walking the next day which is really rare for an ACL injury. We saw Tyrone Mings get stretchered off for Aston Villa on the weekend with his ACL injury. But the club has said he’s just a tear in his ACL, there’s no further damage to his knee.”

Rotten luck

It seems to be a case of incredibly bad luck for Timber, rather than any mistake from Arteta, the medical staff or the player.

The assessment at halftime was that he would be fine to continue, but early on in the second half he went down again, and the club withdrew him immediately.

Arsenal FC v Nottingham Forest - Premier League
Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

As explained by the club, it is very rare for a player to be able to walk after an ACL injury, and the initial signs may have been more positive because of this.

Timber now faces an extended spell on the sidelines after just two competitive appearances, and given that he has looked very impressive in both games, this injury comes as a huge blow to Arteta, who will now consider his defensive options for the season.

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