Milan's Mario Balotelli could be out for three months, with reports he’ll have surgery on a hernia this week.
The striker, on-loan from Liverpool, has not featured for the Rossoneri since the defeat to Genoa on September 27, and had been following a conservative recovery plan.
However, Gazzetta dello Sport is reporting that a consultation with Professor Per Holmich in Copenhagen revealed a more serious inguinal hernia, meaning surgery is the only option.
The newspaper expects a three-month absence for the Italian international, meaning he will be out of contention until mid-February, and even then would have to regain match sharpness.
The news comes as a blow for Balotelli, who had been looking to force his way into Antonio Conte’s Italy squad for Euro 2016.
In addition, the likelihood of Milan signing the striker outright in the summer now appears diminished.