Wenger bemoans horror tackles

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The Independent Football

Aaron Ramsey will miss the rest of the season after suffering fractures to the tibia and fibula of his right leg in Arsenal's 3-1 victory over Stoke.

The 19-year-old Wales midfielder was rushed to hospital after being injured in a tackle from Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross.

Ramsey underwent surgery on Saturday night and he was expected to be transferred back to London yesterday.

The horrific injury overshadowed Arsenal's victory at the Britannia Stadium, which drew them to within three points of league leaders Chelsea, who were beaten 4-2 at home by Manchester City.

"I'm proud of our game because it was an unbelievable battle from the first minute. We needed to be tough and resilient to win," said Wenger.

Wenger claimed Arsenal are being targeted having lost Eduardo to a similar injury against Birmingham two years ago and Abou Diaby earlier this season.

"I'm not very happy with the tackle," Wenger fumed.

"We know what we are expecting, a battle everywhere, but we have now lost three players on horrendous tackles and I refuse to believe it's always coincidence."

Shawcross, who received an England call-up after the game, left the field in tears after being sent off and he later said there was no malicious intent in the challenge.

Stoke had opened the scoring when Danny Pugh headed in a long throw from Rory Delap but Nicklas Bendtner levelled things up before half-time.

Cesc Fabregas scored from the penalty spot when Pugh was penalised from handball and Thomas Vermaelen grabbed a third late on.

The Gunners' victory pulled them within three points of leaders Chelsea, who were beaten by Manchester City on an extraordinary afternoon at Stamford Bridge.

Wayne Bridge's refusal to shake John Terry's hand before kick-off had been predicted - but precious else was as City romped to a 4-2 victory against nine-man Chelsea.

Carlos Tevez and Craig Bellamy scored twice each while Chelsea, who took the lead with the first of two goals from Frank Lampard, had Juliano Belletti and Michael Ballack sent off.

Afterwards, Bellamy took a swipe at Terry, claiming: "Everybody in football knows what the guy is like. But that is off the field."

Terry responded with jibe at Bellamy's chequered history, saying: "People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones."

Portsmouth beat Burnley 2-1 at Turf Moor and were then given hope of potentially avoiding a nine-point deduction for going into administration with debts of around £78million.

Frederic Piquionne opened the scoring in the 25th minute and Hassan Yebda bagged the winner after Martin Paterson had brought Burnley level.

Portsmouth are bottom of the table and a points deduction would leave them almost certain to be relegated.

"The assumption that there is an automatic deduction of points has never been tested before but we will do our very best to avoid a deduction," said Andrew Andronikou, who is investigating the club's financial situation.

"Our solicitors believe there may be a slight opportunity."

James McFadden netted the winner in first-half injury time as Birmingham won 1-0 at home to Wigan to reach the 40-point mark.

Zat Knight's close-range finish close to half-time earned Bolton all three points against fellow strugglers Wolves at the Reebok Stadium.

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