Arsene Wenger believes that the impact of the African Nations Cup will be felt long after the tournament has finished.
The Arsenal manager will see midfield duo Alex Song and Emmanuel Eboue depart for Angola in January for duty with Cameroon and Ivory Coast, respectively.
And while the competition will be completed at the end of January, Wenger feels that the after-effects could still be hampering players involved for the remainder of the Premier League campaign.
"I would rather plan without an African Nations Cup every two years," Wenger told the London Evening Standard.
"We plan to cover their absence with the players we have in the squad. Fortunately, this year we only have two who go to the tournament.
"Sometimes we have had worst periods than that but we still lose two quality players.
"On occasions, the players come back affected by a negative experience. Sometimes they come back very tired and that depends on the climate and the number of games they have played.
"The effects are not necessarily seen during the period that they are out there but it can have consequences on their form for the rest of their season."
Wenger has already seen his squad hit hard by injuries this season and he is at a loss as to why the North London club have been so unfortunate.
He added: "This season we have suffered injuries that have no link.
"If, for example, you only have hamstring injuries then you can say something is not right in training but that is not the case."