Arsene Wenger says Santi Cazorla's three-month injury layoff is "very bad news" for Arsenal, while Mathieu Debuchy is facing up to six weeks on the sidelines.
Cazorla will have surgery in Sweden next week after failing to recover from an inflamed tendon in the heel of his right foot, which he injured back in October. Wenger said it could be "at least two months" rather than the three the club had initially reported, but said there would be no need to enter the transfer market in January.
"For me It's very bad news. Because you know always the date of the surgery, but never the date when the player will play again," Wenger said at his news conference ahead of Saturday's Premier League game at West Ham. "And I always try to put absolutely everything in place to avoid surgery. Because it creates always anxiety and rehab.
"And overall I think when you can avoid it you have to avoid it. But in this case unfortunately we have come to that conclusion. Now they tell me that he will be out for two months at least. But two months can sometimes be three as well."
Arsenal have struggled to replace Cazorla's creativity in midfield so far, but Wenger rejected the idea that he should buy another midfielder in January. Arsenal bought Granit Xhaka in the summer, and also have Francis Coquelin, Aaron Ramsey and Mohamed Elneny as options.