Sheffield Wednesday have suffered a pre-derby setback with news forward Fernando Forestieri has been ruled out until 2019 due to injury.
The 28-year-old limped off in Saturday’s 4-2 defeat to Blackburn Rovers and a scan has revealed he tore his hamstring which is expected to sideline him for a minimum of six weeks.
That means Forestieri – who has only made seven starts all season – will miss tomorrow’s crucial South Yorkshire derby against Rotherham United, and the entire festive schedule.
While the loss of the Argentine-born forward is another injury blow for the Owls, Forestieri has had limited chances this season.
This season he is yet to feature in a winning Owls team, when starting the game, and a combination of injury, form and suspension have combined to keep him out of manager Jos Luhukay’s staring XI.
But with pressure growing on Luhukay to improve a poor record of six defeats in eight Championship outings, the loss of Forestieri robs him of another strike option wth the likes of Sam Winnall and Gary Hooper yet to feature this season due to injury.
Forestieri was a substitute at Ewood Park, but looked lethargic and made little impact after being introduced after 45 minutes, before hobbling off in second-half stoppage time.
After the game, Luhukay said: “Yet again he has a problem with his hamstring. He will go for a scan Tuesday or Wednesday.
“We hope not again that he will be (out) for six, seven or eight weeks.”
With those fears now confirmed, Wednesday’s striker options are limited.
The loss of Forestieri – who has netted three goals this term – means Luhukay has three strikers in Steven Fletcher, Lucas Joao and Atdhe Nuhiu to select from for tomorrow’s visit of the Millers.
West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini has confirmed Marko Arnautovic will be out injured until the new year.
The five-goal forward suffered a muscle injury late on in the first half of Tuesday night’s 3-1 win over Cardiff. Pellegrini said: “Marko will probably be out for around one month. We know how important he is for the team.”
Pellegrini also ruled midfielder Jack Wilshere out of Saturday’s visit of Crystal Palace due to an ankle injury.