Danny Ward: Injured Cardiff striker expected to miss three months
Cardiff City could be without Danny Ward for much of the season after the striker's knee injury proved to be more serious than first thought.
Ward has undergone surgery and the Championship side expect him to be out for at least three months.
Aron Gunnarsson is another blow, with the Iceland midfielder expected to be out for a month after ankle surgery.
"He's got a bit of floating bone around his ankle," Cardiff manager Neil Warnock said.
"They thought they could steady it around but I always thought it would be better for him to have the operation and get it out and done, because he's going to have at the back of his mind the World Cup isn't he?"
The injury updates are a blow for the promotion-chasing Bluebirds who are second in the Championship, four points behind Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Ward, 26, signed from Rotherham United in June 2017, was hurt in the 3-1 win over Norwich City on 1 December.
It was originally expected the in-form forward - who had scored three goals in six games - would be out for a month.
Gunnarsson has not played since the win at Barnsley at the end of November.
The 76-cap Iceland midfielder has turned down a new contract with the Bluebirds and could leave for nothing when his current deal expires at the end of the season.
But Warnock has not given up hope of keeping hold of the 28-year-old: "He might be here next year if things go well for us, there's no reason why he's not here next season.
"You're going to get these decisions like [Alexis] Sanchez at Arsenal, people like that coming to the end of their contract.
"From my own point of view in a way, it could be good for me that he's having an operation because clubs might think twice about buying him in January."
Warnock's side go to second from bottom Bolton Wanderers on Saturday, with a home match against Fulham on Boxing Day to follow.