Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw will see a specialist to assess the severity of ligament damage sustained in his foot, according to reports on Tuesday.
This was supposed to be a season to cherish for the 21-year-old after recovering from a double leg break, yet it has been frequently punctuated by frustration.
Shaw had worked his way back into Jose Mourinho’s thoughts in recent weeks, only to be forced off early in United’s 1-1 home draw against Swansea on Sunday.
The United boss said it must have been a “big injury” to go off so early and Press Association Sport understands the left-back will see a specialist after scans on Monday showed ligament damage in his left foot.
Shaw’s setback is a big blow on both individual and collective levels as the season comes to a head.
The United left-back has had to deal with issues related to his long injury lay-off this term and has struggled for game time under Mourinho.
The Portuguese has publicly questioned the England international on several occasions, but a meeting between the pair last month led to a surprise first-team return.
Sunday’s match against Swansea was Shaw’s fourth United appearance of April, but came to an end after just nine minutes.
The left-back joins Mourinho’s injury list at a crucial time in the campaign as United look to finish in the top four and win the Europa League.
Eric Bailly was also forced off against Swansea and Mourinho’s Reds are still reeling from Marcos Rojo’s season-ending knee injury.
Fellow defenders Chris Smalling and Phil Jones have yet to return from injuries sustained on England duty, while Tim Fosu-Mensah has an apparent shoulder injury.
United midfielders Juan Mata and Paul Pogba could return from injury in Thursday’s Europa League semi-final first leg at Celta Vigo, but top scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic will not play for United again this season.
The 35-year-old suffered knee ligament damage in the quarter-final second leg against Anderlecht and his agent Mino Raiola has confirmed that the injury has not ended the striker’s career.
“Zlatan Ibrahimovic has undergone successful knee surgery. He will make a full recovery AND HAS NOT SUFFERED A CAREER-ENDING INJURY,” Raiola said in a statement.
“The procedure was performed by Freddie Fu, M.D., and Volker Musahl, M.D., of the UPMC Sports Medicine program in Pittsburgh.
“Zlatan has started rehabilitation at UPMC and will remain under the care of Dr.Fu and Dr.Musahl throughout his recovery.
“Zlatan and the medical team are not available for interviews at this time. Additional updates will follow at a later date.”