By Richard Clarke
Arsène Wenger is satisfied that Cesc Fabregas did NOT play against Barcelona with a broken leg.
The Arsenal captain fractured his fibula winning an 84th-minute penalty against the Spanish champions on Wednesday. But the injury was in the same place as the kick he received from Craig Gardner at Birmingham on Saturday and media reports on Friday suggested that the earlier challenge actually broke the bone.
At his press conference later that day, Wenger strongly refuted the story.
"I am 100 per cent confident [that everything was done properly] and I checked that this morning with our medical team,” he said. “There is no doubt about that. Medically we were clear.
"It will need a big enquiry to tell you exactly when it happened. But we believe that it was from Puyol on the penalty when he kicked Cesc through the legs.
“There were some suggestions that he played with a broken bone but that is not true. We had two independent doctors with X-rays who clarified that the bone was perfectly OK. It was a bruised bone but not broken before the Barcelona match.
“He had a test on the morning of the game, he had another test in the warm-up. I asked him afterwards if he felt perfectly alright and he said ‘yes’.
"The injury is in exactly the place where he got kicked against Birmingham and he has a crack on his bone. That means he already had a bruised bone before the game and the kick from Puyol on it made it split.
"Of course, it was bad news for us because to lose a player of his stature is difficult so we will need even more to fight together to overcome that. When you look at now we have no Arshavin, no Fabregas, no Gallas, no Van Persie - that is a lot. But we want to focus on our targets and can still achieve them."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 2 Apr 2010