West Ham have suffered a major setback ahead of the new season with the news that new signing Julien Faubert will be out of action for six months.

The French midfielder, who joined The Hammers for £6.1million from Bordeaux earlier this month, ruptured his Achilles tendon against Sigma Olomouc on Tuesday.

Head physiotherapist George Cooper told the club’s official website: “The injury was completely out of the blue. Julien has no history of any Achilles problems.

“On the plus side, we have managed to get him to a top surgeon. Two to three days is the key time for this injury and everything will be done and in place for Julien within that period.

“We expect him to be out of action for around six months but we will not be putting any definitive date on his return – he will come back only when he is completely ready.”

West Ham boss Alan Curbishley was inevitably disappointed to have lost a player before the season had even started.

“It’s a devastating blow for everyone, especially Julien,” said Curbishley. “He had fitted in so well and was showing all the attributes needed to be a success in the Premiership.

“You could see in the short bit of football he has played with us that he was going to be a big hit with the supporters.

“To lose him after an hour of football and just two weeks at the club is a big disappointment.”