England will be without forward Theo Walcott for the World Cup, his club Arsenal confirmed on Monday, after a scan revealed that the 24-year-old winger ruptured his ACL during Arsenal’s 2-0 win against Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup at the Emirates on Saturday. The 24-year-old was described as being in “total shock” as the severity of the injury was not immediately obvious to either the player or Arsenal’s medical team.
“Theo will have surgery in London in the near future and is expected to be out for at least six months, therefore missing the remainder of the season and the World Cup in Brazil in the summer,” a statement from the club read. “Everyone at Arsenal wishes Theo a speedy recovery and we look forward to seeing him back on a football pitch as soon as possible."
If rehabilitation goes according to plan, Walcott should be back in training sometime in July. For England, Walcott is the first major injury blow in coach Roy Hodgson’s World Cup preparations. The likes of Spurs’ Andros Townsend and Aaron Lennon, Manchester City’s James Milner and Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are now expected to compete for the starting spot on England’s right side.