Bayern Munich defender David Alaba sustained damage to the ligaments in his right knee and will miss several weeks following surgery, the team announced Thursday.
The injury occurred with nine minutes remaining in Bayern's 2-0 win over Roma in the round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday.
Alaba was diagnosed with a partial tear of the medial collateral ligament (MCL) and damage to the medial meniscus.
"This feels like a bitter blow for me at the moment,” Alaba said. "It's been going so well for me and the team. Once I’ve had the operation, I'll start a sports rehab program as soon as the doc allows it. Hopefully, with the help of our medical unit, I'll soon be back out on the pitch."
Alaba set up Bayern’s first goal against Roma, getting the ball to Franck Ribery after starting the match on defense and switching to midfield.
The 22-year-old has started 18 games for Bayern Munich this season and has two goals and two assists. He is also a member of the Austria men's national team.
"With David Alaba we lose a great lad and a great player," Bayern manager Pep Guardiola told ESPNFC.com. "He can play nearly every position on the field. He is very important for us. We just hope he will come back as soon as possible, but I think we will see him just before Christmas."
Bayern is already without midfielders Bastian Schweinsteiger, Thiago Alcantara and Javi Martinez.
- Phil Watson