Arsenal will be without captain Cesc Fabregas for their Carling Cup final clash with Birmingham City, after his hamstring injury sustained against Stoke in the week ruled him out.
Fabregas had been desperate to lead his side out at Wembley, and revealed after the Stoke game that he would not sleep till Sunday if it meant playing.
Following further assessment, his boss Arsene Wenger confirmed that the 23 year-old would miss the big game.
“It is a very small injury but certainly Cesc will be out for Sunday,” Wenger told the Arsenal website “For how long [beyond that] I don’t know but definitely for Sunday.
“He is disappointed. We all feel sorry and sad for him. The only way we help him now is to win the Carling Cup as he contributed a lot in this competition.”
Wenger was also unsure if he would be missing his captain for the return clash against Barcelona in two weeks time at the Nou Camp.
“It is very difficult to give a deadline,” said Wenger. “It is impossible.”
Walcott also went off injured against Stoke and will miss the big game, but should be back in two week.
“I saw him this morning,” added Wenger. “He has a classic ankle sprain.
“We don’t think there is any more damage to it. But it is still a sprain.
“We are sad for him too. He is out for Sunday and maybe one or two more weeks more.”
In better news for Arsenal fans, Van Persie, Koscielny and Diaby are all back and fit for the first Cup Final of the season.
“All the three will be available,” continued Wenger. “That’s the good news.
“And everybody else is all right from the Stoke game too.”