Manchester City have confirmed that Bulgaria winger Martin Petrov faces at least three months on the sidelines with a knee injury.
The 29-year-old sustained the problem while on international duty recently and has not featured for the Citizens since the 3-2 home defeat by Liverpool earlier this month.
Petrov had suffered a serious knee injury earlier on in his career, with City boss Mark Hughes relieved that the new injury is not a recurrence of the same problem.
He told the club's official website: "Martin went to see a specialist on Monday and will fly out to see the guy that did his anterior cruciate ligament to have it re-checked.
"The news is that it's not his ACL this time, he's got a tear in his meniscus that will need to be repaired.
"Although it's good news about the ACL, it's still a bad injury and he will probably be out for three or four months."
Hughes will also be without Micah Richards for a time, with the defender having suffered strained ankle ligaments in the 2-2 draw at Newcastle United on Monday evening.
However, City were relieved to discover that scans showed no break in Richards' ankle, after the England international had to be replaced just before the hour mark of the St James' Park encounter.