Leah Williamson to miss World Cup with ruptured ACL

Leah Williamson is set to miss the remainder of the season, and the FIFA Women’s World Cup this summer, after rupturing her right anterior cruciate ligament during Arsenal’s 1-0 loss to Manchester United.

The centre-back has been deputising in midfield for her club lately, as Jonas Eidevall’s available squad seems to shrink week by week. With Beth Mead and Vivienne Miedema also out for the Gunners with ACL injuries, there will surely be calls for increased medical support in the women’s game.

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Williamson’s absence is a huge blow for Arsenal, who may have dropped out of contention for the Women’s Super League title as they dropped points to table-topping United at Leigh Sports Village in mid-week. With a two-legged UEFA Women’s Champions League semifinal tie against German giants VfL Wolfsburg coming up, this injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for the North London side.

This will also serve as a huge shake-up to Sarina Wiegman’s plans for the upcoming Women’s World Cup. Williamson has captained England for over a year, and has been instrumental to the Lionesses’ success – and losing such a versatile player will force Wiegman to adapt. Williamson’s absence may open up the doors for Steph Houghton to return to the backline, or the England boss could opt for younger talent such as Maya Le Tissier.

Regardless of what happens for the rest of the season, we’d like to wish Leah all the best in her recovery.