Southampton striker Charlie Austin faces two months on the sidelines after suffering a suspected hamstring tear during Saints' 1-1 draw with Huddersfield.
The English striker - who's been in red hot form over the last few months - missed out on Southampton's 5-2 defeat at the hands of Tottenham on Boxing Day as a result of a suspension following a kick on Terriers keeper Jonas Lossl.
However, speaking ahead of his side's trip to Old Trafford on the weekend, Saints boss Mauricio Pellegrino confirmed the news:
"Charlie, I think he will be out more than normal...this evening [Thursday] he will have another test to analyse a little bit better his injury, the grade of his injury." Pellegrino said, as quoted by Sky Sports.
"We will see but I expect Charlie will be out for a couple of months, minimum. It is a big pity because Charlie was in a really good moment."
Austin is Southampton's top scorer so far this season - having netted five in his last seven matches. Although the news is undoubtedly bad for the club, Pellegrino remains optimistic - stating that Austin's injury will hand more opportunities to his other strikers:
"OK it is something that happens but the good news for Shane [Long] and Manolo [Gabbiadini] is that they will have more minutes to compete and it's a possibility for them."
Southampton currently sit 14th in the Premier League table, on two points away from the relegation zone having only accumulated 19 so far this season.
Fortunately for Pellegrino, the January transfer window is days away from opening should he feel the need to reinforce his side.