ARSENAL and England forward Theo Walcott has been ruled out for at least six months after rupturing knee ligaments and will miss this year's World Cup, the club has confirmed.
Walcott suffered the injury late in the 2-0 victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup third round on Saturday and left the field on a stretcher after appearing to jar his knee in a challenge with Danny Rose.
The 24-year-old did not appear in too much discomfort and caused controversy by indicating the score to Tottenham fans behind the goal as he was carried off.
The Football Association took no action over Walcott's gestures but any relief was quickly overshadowed by the medical bulletin which revealed he had ruptured anterior cruciate ligaments in his left knee.
"Theo will have surgery in London in the near future and is expected to be out for at least six months, therefore missing the remainder of the season and the World Cup in Brazil in the summer," Arsenal said on their website.
Walcott has been in great form, scoring five goals in five games before Saturday's derby.