Injury leaves Laurent Koscielny’s World Cup 2018 hopes in danger

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Madrid: France defender Laurent Koscielny’s World Cup hopes are in serious doubt after he suffered a suspected ruptured Achilles in Arsenal’s Europa League semifinal defeat against Atletico Madrid on Thursday. “It looks like an Achilles rupture,” Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. “But we have to be cautious. We will know more after a scan.

“If he has a ruptured Achilles, his (World Cup) chances are non-existent.” Arsenal lost the second leg 1-0 and was eliminated 2-1 on aggregate. “You can always hope for a miracle in the scan but the first signs don’t look very good,” Wenger said.

There was no one near Koscielny when he turned his foot and collapsed to the turf clutching the back of his ankle less than 10 minutes into the game at the Wanda Metropolitano. The Arsenal captain was clearly in pain as he thumped the ground with his hand before eventually leaving the field on a stretcher to be replaced by Calum Chambers.

Koscielny, who has 51 caps for France, had planned to retire from the international stage following the World Cup in Russia that starts next month.

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