By Richard Clarke

The first six weeks will be the worst in the recuperation of Cesc Fabregas, according to Arsène Wenger.

The Spanish midfielder suffered a partial rupture of his medial knee ligaments just before half-time in Sunday’s Premier League game with Liverpool. The 21-year-old will not require surgery but the injury is likely to keep him out for around four months.

It will be an arduous journey back to full fitness and, Wenger argues, the first steps are the most painful – mentally and physically.

“I believe that the really difficult period is the first six weeks,” said the manager. “You are in a brace and you cannot move at all. You cannot practice. When they take the brace off you can have rehabilitation and be busy the whole day but the first six weeks are really difficult.

“That is a massive blow for Cesc because he is a competitor who wants to play every day. If you play six games in a week he will want to play six games.”

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 24 Dec 2008