ARSENAL have been hit by an injury crisis at the back – yet cannot recall centre half Calum Chambers from Fulham.
Rob Holding is set to miss the rest of the season after he ruptured his anterior cruciate knee ligament.
AFP4 Calum Chambers doesn't have a recall clause in his loan contract at Fulham
Club captain Laurent Koscielny is still some way off match fitness in his recovery from a serious Achilles injury that has kept him out for seven months.
And Nacho Monreal, who can also cover the centre-half positions, is still struggling with a hamstring injury.
Rookie Greek defender Konstantinos Mavrapanos has continuing issues with his groin.
That leaves Gunners boss Unai Emery with just Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos as his fit centre-backs.
PA:Press Association4 Centre-half Rob Holding was taken off against Manchester United and is set to be out for the season
AP:Associated Press4 Unai Emery has just two fit centre-backs in his bid to keep Arsenal's unbeaten run going
And the Evening Standard has revealed that there is NO recall clause in Chambers' loan deal at Fulham.
The former Southampton star seems to be enjoying life at Craven Cottage, and has even started to flourish in a new position.
Since Claudio Ranieri took the reins, Chambers has played the last three games in central midfield.
That move was suggested to Ranieri by Fulham coach Scott Parker – someone who definitely would know what it takes to star in the position.
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Getty Images – Getty4 Calum Chambers has been deployed as a central midfielder in recent games, and has impressed
It will come as a blow to Gunners fans, who may feel this spate of injuries could affect their 20-game unbeaten run.
Holding was taken off on a stretcher in the first half of the 2-2 draw with Manchester United at the weekend.
And the Gunners are set to reveal the 23-year-old has suffered cruciate-ligament damage that could rule him out for several months.
The former England Under-21 star was hurt in a challenge with Marcus Rashford.
And it is understood his boot was unable to grip on the astroturf around the perimeter of the pitch.