Koscielny walking again after horrific Achilles injury
What's the story?
Arsenal captain and central defender, Laurent Koscielny, is walking again after picking up a horrific Achilles injury in the second leg of the Europa League semi-final against Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano.
He is expected to be out for six months after surgery on a ruptured Achilles tendon. Koscielny, 32, was carried off 12 minutes into Arsenal's Europa League semi-final second leg defeat by Atletico Madrid in May.
France manager Didier Deschamps had already confirmed the centre-back would miss this summer's World Cup.
"You will not see him until December at best. Koscielny is devastated. People have always inflamed tendons but they don't rupture but in his case it went. I don't know why. The recovery will be full because the advantage of surgery is that it heals the inflammation." - Former Arsenal Manager, Arsene Wenger, after the game
In case you didn't know...
Laurent Koscielny was on course to play for France at the 2018 World Cup until a ruptured Achilles tendon left him in agony, but the experienced defender already has a plan in place for coping with a period of enforced inactivity.
The Arsenal centre-back suffered the injury during the Gunners’ Europa League semi-final defeat to Atletico Madrid and is not expected to be back in action until November when Unai Emery’s first campaign in charge will be well underway.
Heart of the matter
Koscielny’s recovery is progressing but, in an interview with France Football, he laid bare the moment he knew his Russia 2018 dream had died.
“I knew right away that my tendon had let go,” he said. “The pain was not usual, I felt a terrible break. My first reaction was to say to myself, “It’s dead, my tendon has burst’. I screamed on the pitch… excruciating pain.”
In terms of his rehabilitation programme, Koscielny acknowledged it is early days and his routine at the moment includes plenty of taking it easy.
“My programme? Television, crosswords and Nintendo,” he said. “I am now wearing a boot, which allows me to walk on crutches. “In three months I hope to resume light jogging. In five months I could certainly retouch the ball.”
Today, Koscielny took to his Instagram account to share his progress with regard to the rehabilitation. In the video, the Frenchman can be seen walking gingerly without the assistance of his crutches.
Although the road to full recovery is some way off, it is great to see Koscielny taking his first steps towards returning to full action for Arsenal. Something for the Gunners to be excited about.
We can expect Koscielny to take his time with returning to first team action, but the signs of progress are good. In a couple of months we're likely to see him return to light training and from there it is all about making sure to not aggravate the injury and we could see him back in the red for Arsenal before the end of this year.