AFC Bournemouth will be without Callum Wilson for a minimum of six months after scans confirmed the striker has suffered a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.
Wilson sustained the injury to his right knee during Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Stoke City and will undergo an operation next week.
The 23-year-old had enjoyed a flying start to his debut Premier League season, scoring five times in seven matches – including a hat-trick when Bournemouth secured their maiden top-flight win 4-3 at West Ham United.
“It’s very disappointing for Callum, after what has been an exceptional start to the season, but I am sure he will come back fitter and stronger,” Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe told the club’s official website.
“Callum is the type of character who won’t be fazed by such a setback, and I am sure he will turn this experience into a positive in the long run.
“As I have said many times before though, this kind of setback offers others the opportunity to step up to the plate, show everybody what they can do and make a real impact at this level.”