Stoke City midfielder Glenn Whelan could be out of action for up to six weeks after breaking his leg on international duty.
Whelan, 30, suffered the injury during the Republic of Ireland's 1-1 draw with Germany in their European Championship qualifier in Gelsenkirchen.
Potters boss Mark Hughes said: "There is a slight fracture, but he hasn't been put in a plaster cast."
"It is disappointing but thankfully we have options in there."
Whelan, who joined Stoke from Sheffield Wednesday in 2008, has played seven Premier League games this season and made three appearances for his country.
Hughes added: "It is a blow for him and it is a blow for us because we are likely to be without him for four to six weeks."