Gilberto sidelined for at least a month
LONDON, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Arsenal's Brazilian midfielder Gilberto will be out for at least a month with a back injury, the English champions said on Tuesday.
'Gilberto is out. We don't know how long for but it will be at least one month without any physical effort,' manager Arsene Wenger told Arsenal's official website.
'It is a strange injury and an injury which usually concerns young players,' Wenger said before he flew to Norway with his squad minus Gilberto for Arsenal's Champions League Group E match against Rosenborg Trondheim on Wednesday.
'I don't know if it is a recurrence of an injury he had when he was young. It could be a small fracture in one of his vertebrae.'
Gilberto missed Arsenal's Premier League win at Manchester City on Saturday and could well sit out their next Champions League game away to Panathinaikos on October 20.
Wenger added: 'It is a blow. Gilberto is a team player and just look at what he has won - the World Cup, the championship and the FA Cup - in recent years.'
Gilberto's absence will free up a place in central midfield alongside Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira for fellow Brazilian Edu or Spanish teenager Francesc Fabregas.
French midfielder Robert Pires had been doubtful for Wednesday's match with a foot injury but Wenger said: 'Robert is with us and should play tomorrow.'