Manchester United midfielder Casemiro is unlikely to play before Christmas after sustaining a hamstring injury.
The Brazil international was taken off at halftime of United’s 3-0 loss against Newcastle in the League Cup last week.
United initially said he would be out of action for “several weeks,” but on Tuesday manager Erik ten Hag gave a clearer indication of how long it would take Casemiro to recover.
Speaking ahead of United’s Champions League game against Copenhagen on Wednesday, Ten Hag said Casemiro and (Lisandro) Martinez had “really strong injuries” and added, “I don’t expect them back before Christmas.”
Long-term absentee Martinez has a foot injury.
United has 10 games in all competitions between now and Christmas and is also without injured defenders Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia.
“I have some time schedules,” Ten Hag said. “But it’s always difficult to project (recovery times) … because there can always be setbacks during the rehab period.”
United’s squad for Copenhagen also includes Victor Lindelof and Marcus Rashford, who missed Saturday’s game against Fulham through illness and a leg issue respectively, but Ten Hag said they were “100%.”