Tranmere Rovers midfielder Steve Davies looks set to miss the rest of the season after suffering a serious knee injury in the 2-2 draw with Northampton Town last weekend.
The 19-year-old lasted just 19 minutes of the clash with the Cobblers and the diagnosis of the injury was worse than was first feared.
Rovers physio Les Parry told the club's official website: "As is usual in this situation, surgery will be delayed by two to four weeks while the knee settles down and the swelling subsides.
"If the reconstruction takes place as soon as possible, the aim is to have him play a competitive game before the end of the season."
Boss Ronnie Moore added: "It's sad news for Steve and for us. He had been in great form for us this season.
"Steve has a positive and strong character and there are plenty of players who have had cruciate ligament surgery and come back to hit top form with stronger knees.
"I'm sure this will be the case with Steve. He has a top surgeon and the best physio in the leagues to bring him back to fitness."