Wednesday, January 8, 2014, 10:11
England will be without hobbled Walcott
By China Daily

England will be without hobbled Walcott

Theo Walcott makes a gesture to fans as he leaves the pitch during Saturday's 2-0 FA Cup victory over Tottenham at Emirates Stadium. (Dylan Martinez / Reuters)

England forward Theo Walcott will miss this year's World Cup in Brazil after being ruled out for at least six months with a knee injury, his club, Arsenal, said on Monday.

Walcott suffered a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee during Premier League leader Arsenal's 2-0 FA Cup win at home overTottenham Hotspur on Saturday.

An Arsenal statement said Walcott is "expected to be out for at least six months, therefore missing the remainder of the (English) season and the World Cup in Brazil in the summer".

The 24-year-old Walcott jarred his knee while making a tackle as time was running out and was carried from the field.

Arsenal teammate Aaron Ramsey sympathized with Walcott on Twitter by saying: "Gutted for Theo, he'll come back stronger after this. Been fantastic for us so far this season. Have a speedy recovery mate."

Former Arsenal and England midfielder Ray Parlour said Walcott's absence would be a major loss for both club and country.

"What a really big injury this is for Arsenal and England, because I'm sure Theo would have been a starter for England in Brazil," Parlour told Sky Sports News.

"And it must be a massive blow for himself because he's playing on a very good team at the moment, top of the league, and looking forward to Brazil."

While being taken from the pitch on a stretcher, Walcott was pelted by coins and plastic bottles, among other objects, thrown by irate Tottenham supporters.

Earlier on Monday, and before the extent of his injury was made public, the Football Association, the English game's governing body, said Walcott would not face disciplinary action for making a gesture from his stretcher that appeared to be aimed at Spurs fans.

Walcott missed the final two World Cup qualifiers - against Montenegro and Poland - due to injury, with Tottenham's Andros Townsend winning rave reviews after taking his place.

Agence France-Presse