Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has confirmed that fullback Mathieu Debuchy has been ruled out for three months after undergoing ankle surgery.
The 29-year-old Frenchman, who arrived at Arsenal from Newcastle for a reported fee of £12 million this summer, was carried off on a stretcher after landing awkwardly on his left ankle while challenging for the ball during the Gunners' 2-2 draw against Manchester City in the Premier League.
Earlier it was being speculated that the right-back could face a lengthy spell on the sidelines after he damaged the ligaments of his left ankle.
Now Wenger has confirmed that Debuchy will be out for three months.
"He [Debuchy] had surgery on Friday and will be out for three months," Wenger told Arsenal's official website. "A reasonable delay is three months. All went well, but it can be a week or two earlier or a week or two later, but it will be around three months."
This injury means that the Frenchman may miss up to 14 Premier League fixtures and all of the Gunners' remaining group games in the Champions League.
Despite admitting that the injury is a big blow for his side, Wenger is confident that Calum Chambers will do well during Debuchy's absence.
"It is a blow of course, how big it will be we will only know afterwards because it will be down to how well we replace him. We bought [Calum] Chambers for that."
The main problem for Arsenal now is that they do not have any back up if either of their central defenders Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny gets suspended or injured.
Although Chambers is capable of playing in the heart of the defence as well, Arsenal only have the inexperienced Hector Bellerin to cover in the right-back position if the former Southampton defender is deployed in the centre-back position.
Bellerin proved that he is not ready for first team action as yet as he was disappointing during Arsenal's 2-0 loss to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League last Tuesday.
It is believed that Wenger is currently looking to sign free agents Joseph Yobo and Diego Lugano as a temporary solution for his side's defensive woes.