Premier League strugglers Sunderland suffered another injury setback on Tuesday when German midfielder Jan Kirchhoff was ruled out for up to eight weeks.
Kirchhoff, 26, was stretchered off during Saturday's 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion and scans have revealed the full extent of the damage to his hamstring.
"Jan Kirchhoff has been ruled out for a minimum of six weeks after suffering a hamstring injury during Sunderland's draw against West Bromwich Albion," a Sunderland statement read.
"The former Bayern Munich player was stretchered off in Saturday's game at the Stadium of Light and in order to assess the extent of the injury, the 26-year-old underwent a scan which revealed he will be out for six to eight weeks."
Kirchhoff's long-term absence comes after Sunderland manager David Moyes had already been deprived of Adnan Januzaj, Vito Mannone, Sebastian Larsson, Lee Cattermole, Steven Pienaar, Victor Anichebe and Fabio Borini in recent weeks.