LONDON (AP) Arsenal says striker Danny Welbeck will be ''out for a period of months'' after having surgery on his left knee.

The 24-year-old Welbeck picked up the injury at the end of April following a goalless draw at home against Chelsea. He missed the remainder of the campaign and has not played since the start of the new season.

Arsenal says ''it had been hoped he would avoid surgery but after increasing his training workload, the injury to his cartilage did not respond as well as hoped and the decision was taken last week for him to undergo surgery by a leading specialist in the field.''

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Arsenal has taken seven points from its opening four matches and is five points behind league leader Manchester City.