Norwich City midfielder Damien Francis could be out of action for two months after fracturing his cheekbone in training.
Francis will undergo an operation on Saturday after he picked up the injury when colliding with teammate Leon McKenzie in training on Thursday.
The 25-year-old will then have an anxious wait to discover the full extent of the damage, which could keep him out of Norwich’s plans until into the New Year.
The in-form 25-year-old is Norwich’s joint-top scorer this season with four goals.
“It’s very, very disappointing,” said Canaries manager Nigel Worthington. “He is a big loss for us but, unfortunately, that’s football.
“Damien will have an operation on Saturday and then, and only then, will we have a more accurate timescale as to how long he might be out for.
“It could be one of those that, if everything settles down quickly, with a mask he could be back within 14 days.
“But if the surgeon gets inside and it’s more complicated then it could be six weeks, two months.”
Norwich are currently third from bottom of the Premiership and it was Francis’ brace last week that earned the club their first Premiership win of the season against Southampton.