Danny Welbeck backed to "come back strong" by Arsenal teammate

Danny Welbeck has been backed to “come back strong” after suffering a sickening ankle injury against Sporting Lisbon.

Arsenal forward Welbeck was taken to hospital with a suspected broken ankle following the Gunners’ Europa League clash against Sporting.

Arsenal have yet to discover the extent of the injury but Welbeck is set for an unfortunately familiar long spell on the sidelines and period of rehab before he can play again.

The 27 year-old has been dogged by injury since joining Arsenal in 2014 with three separate knee problems between May 2015 and January 2017 the biggest and forcing him to miss a total of 70 games.

Rob Holding said of his luckless teammate Welbeck: “He’s been so unlucky with injuries over the past few years but he’s a good character and got a good set of lads around him so we’ll lift him up and get him back as soon as we can.

"He can come back strong.”

Not only has the injury cast doubt over the rest of Welbeck’s season but his long-term future too.

His Arsenal contract expires next summer and had been no nearer to reaching an agreement on an extension before he was left in agony when his ankle buckled underneath him as he landed awkwardly when challenging for Stephan Lichtsteiner’s cross.

For now, what is certain is Welbeck will miss tomorrow’s clash with Wolves and has also had to withdraw from Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the upcoming games against USA and Croatia.

Holding admitted he was disappointed not to make the cut for Southgate after becoming an Arsenal mainstay in recent weeks, starting 10 of their last 12 games.

Instead, Southgate opted for John Stones, Joe Gomez, Michael Keane and Lewis Dunk as his centre-back options.

Holding, who used to room with Ben Chilwell, also now in the seniors, when he was on England under-21 duty, said: “You see Ben getting in and he’s a guy I first roomed with in the England Under 21s so I am really happy with how he’s doing.

“We’ve seen with Harry Maguire, getting his chance over the past year how well he has done. So, there will be chances there. I was disappointed to miss out but I’m just concentrating on getting a run on the team.”

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