AFC Bournemouth midfielder Shaun MacDonald will be sidelined for around ten weeks after it was confirmed that he had ruptured an ankle ligament against Colchester.
The Cherries midfielder went down in front of the North Stand just before half time on Saturday and was treated on the side of the pitch by physio Steve Hard and was visibly in pain whilst receiving oxygen.
It was initially feared that he may have suffered a break, but a scan on Tuesday afternoon confirmed ligament damage.
It is estimated that he will be unable to train for the next eight weeks, before another two weeks of training will be needed to get back to match fitness.
In the mean time MacDonald will be wearing a protective boot over the Christmas period and into the New Year.
AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe will now consider his options with MacDonald unavailable.
During the Cherries friendly with Reading, AFC Bournemouth fielded an un-named trialist in midfield alongside Lorenzo Davids and Josh Carmichael. With Joe Partington partnering Stephane Zubar in defence.
Carmichael had impressed, but limped off during the second half and left Dean Court on crutches.
Howe told BBC Radio Solent…
‘I don’t think we’ve got a Shaun MacDonald-type player like-for-like we can bring in,’
‘It might mean we have to be a little bit more flexible in the way we set up, It may mean we have to be creative and although we do have players who can play a similar role, Shaun was unique in terms of his qualities.
‘But whether we bring one in from within, or whether we tweak our system, or whether we look to bring a loan player in January, all options are available to us at this moment.’
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