Norwich defender Ben Gibson will miss the rest of the season with an ankle injury and is set for surgery, the Sky Bet Championship leaders have confirmed.
Gibson, on loan from Burnley, suffered the problem during the closing stages of the 1-1 draw against Blackburn last Saturday, with scans revealing ligament damage.
Following specialist advice, the 28-year-old will have an operation.
The issue, though, is not expected to impact on Gibson’s loan deal becoming a permanent transfer in the summer should the Canaries go on to secure promotion back to the Premier League.
A statement on the Norwich club website read: “Ben Gibson will miss the remainder of the 2020-21 season following confirmation of an ankle ligament injury.
“The central defender was forced from the field of play in the 83rd minute of City’s recent Sky Bet Championship draw against Blackburn Rovers at Carrow Road.
“Subsequent scans and a consultation with an independent specialist have since revealed damage to the ligaments in his right ankle.
“Gibson will now undergo surgery before beginning a period of rehabilitation with club staff at the Lotus Training Centre.”
The defender, who made 29 appearances in all competitions, expressed his thanks to the Norfolk club and is focused on a return to action ahead of the new campaign.
“Thanks to everyone for all of the messages and support,” Gibson wrote on Twitter.
“I’ve loved every second of my time here and I have no doubt the boys will bring it over the line very soon. I’m sure I’ll be back for pre-season.”
Norwich are eight points clear at the top of the Championship following a run of nine straight wins from the past 10 league games.
Daniel Farke’s team will return to their promotion push away at Preston on Good Friday.