Newcastle striker Mark Viduka could be out of action for six months if surgery is required on his injured Achilles.
Viduka,, who has not played this season, has flown to Australia to undergo a scan to assess the extent of the injury.
Caretaker boss Joe Kinnear said: “There is a chance he may need surgery, if that is the case we will be without him for six months.”
The Australian international joined Newcastle on a free transfer from Middlesbrough in June 2007. He played 21 times for Newcastle last season, scoring seven times.
“Mark Viduka has had one scan on his injury, but he wanted a second opinion and so too did our medical people. That is why he has gone back to Australia,” Kinnear told the Newcastle Chronicle.