Manchester City striker Darius Vassell will be out of action for two and a half months after injuring his knee, manager Mark Hughes said on Wednesday.
This means Vassell will miss Thursday night's UEFA Cup second qualifying round, first leg at home to Danish club FC Midtjylland and of course the first few matches of the Premiership, which starts this weekend.
Manager Mark Hughes said of Vassell, who got injured in a friendly against AC Milan at the weekend: "It is likely Darius will not be available for something like 10 weeks. He will be in a brace for six weeks and then will need another month to build up his fitness.
"Missing the start of the season is disappointing for him and myself as he has been exceptional in pre-season."