Wayne Rooney has picked up a knee injury which will rule him out for up to 8 weeks.
This will come as a huge blow to Manchester United and Louis Van Gaal who were no doubt hoping Rooney could help steer them into European qualification come the end of the season.
He will still have a part to play, however United’s immediate results will now be out of his hands.
Rooney began 2016 with a bang, scoring with a deft backheel answering his critics in the process, many of whom had been putting even more pressure than usual on the striker due to his inconsistent form.
Since then, Rooney has been a solid part of United’s backbone as their form his ebbed and flowed without finding any real consistency.
United have fallen off the European qualification pace of late as they’ve struggled to beat sides they really should be picking points up from.
Meanwhile the teams around them have maintained a consistent pace which may mean United miss out altogether this season.
Rooney’s injury may be even more concerning for England fans who will naturally worry about his match fitness ahead of Euro 2016.
By the time he returns, which is expected to be in April, the season will be entering it’s final few weeks and Rooney will likely be facing a race against time to be fit to play for his country.