Aston Villa striker John Carew could be out of action until the start of November after scans on his injured knee confirmed ligament damage.
Carew is facing four to six weeks on the sidelines after picking up the injury during the second half of Sunday's Premier League game with Everton and a scan on Monday confirmed his worst fears.
Boss Martin O'Neill confirmed on Villa's website that the Norway international is set to miss at least three games.
He said: "At this minute he has definitely got a ligament problem and we're looking at maybe four to six weeks.
"It came as he was stretching for a ball. Somebody fell on top of him and he twisted it. I would have obviously preferred him to be fit for Monday night, but we will see how it goes.
"We're playing (Leicester in the Carling Cup) tomorrow, at Tottenham and then we play West Ham before an international fortnight. So from that viewpoint he could have missed more games."
The Villa chief added: "It's a blow because he's a key player for us. But this is going to happen during the course of a season and you have to cope with it. It's now all about players coming in, doing well and staking their claim.
"Even when Carew wasn't scoring goals I still think he was a handful for the opposition. Opposing managers and backroom staff would all say he caused big problems.