Liverpool and Arsenal strike target contending with 'serious knee injury'

Nigeria Team

Liverpool and Arsenal have both been credited with interest in Emmanuel Emenike, can he get fit enough even to be in with a chance of a summer move?

Emmanuel Emenike is a striker who certainly can't be described as dull. In an article earlier this year we described him as Africa's most exciting and controversial talent - not without justification.

Aged 25, the powerful Spartak Moscow striker is prolific for the Russian league leaders, but his past brushes with trouble include match fixing allegations - of which he was later cleared, a drug taking mimicking celebration - which he denied, and being arrested for kicking a football at a policeman while a teenager.

Now we know what you are thinking, the last thing Liverpool need right now is a controversial striker, but earlier in 2013 this is what the Nigerian had to say:

"Growing up in Africa, you hear about the Kop and you want to score goals at that end. It would be amazing, like winning the Africa Cup of Nations. I have always dreamed of playing in the Premier League and, if the opportunity arrives, I will be happy."

Sky Sports reported in February that Arsenal and Reading were also interested in the striker who scored four in five games at the AFCON as he helped Nigeria win the trophy.

However all talk of a move should now be officially placed on hold, after a serious knee injury which is expected to require surgery.

It happened in the recent match with Anzhi Makhachkala, after he had earned his side a penalty when he was brought down in the box by the opposition goalkeeper.

Towards the end of the game Emenike injured his knee, so badly that he had to be helped from the pitch on a stretcher.

"For all the movements it was evident that it is a serious injury. When he shifted from the stretcher, it was obvious that he was very sick," said club legend Yuri Titov.

It has been confirmed Emenike has internal meniscus damage and partial damage to the internal lateral ligament of the knee, and will require surgery, although a leading Russian doctor has offered him hope that he could be back playing by the summer.

The striker will now have to put plans of any transfer move entirely to one side, and concentrate on getting fit again. He is a real asset to Spartak, their star striker, and they will help him through his rehabilitation process, earning some owed loyalty on their parts.

Even then, before making any investment in him, clubs will want to see that he is recovered and not an injury risk.

As Liverpool and Arsenal make their summer transfer plans, this is one striker they can cross off their list for the upcoming window.

Are you disappointed Emenike will not be heading to the Premier League?

image: © attawayjl

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch