Tottenham Hotspur have been dealt a major blow with the news that Son Heung-min will likely be out of action for the remainder of the season after suffering an elbow injury.
The 27-year-old picked up the injury in the early stages of the 3-2 away win against Aston Villa in Birmingham on Sunday afternoon, before playing on. He went on to score two goals for his side in that game, including the late winner.
The South Korean international is understood to have gone for a scan yesterday to look at potential damage to the proximal radius of his right elbow.
That scan has revealed surgery is required, with a typical recovery period of between six and eight weeks.
Spurs boss José Mourinho was less optimistic about Son's recovery time when speaking at a press conference this afternoon.
"I’m not going to count on him again this season. If he plays two or three games then it’s because he (his press officer) is very optimistic, but I’m not counting on him.”
A statement on the club's official website had earlier revealed the extent of the damage, with the surgery set to take place this week.
"Heung-Min Son is to undergo surgery this week after sustaining a fracture to his right arm.
"The South Korea international suffered the injury during our win against Aston Villa on Sunday.
"Following surgery, our medical staff shall be reviewing management options for Son’s rehabilitation with the player expected to be sidelined for a number of weeks."
Injury update on Heung-Min Son.
— Tottenham Hotspur (at 🏡) (@SpursOfficial) February 18, 2020
Son spoke to Off the Ball's Nathan Murphy after the win at the weekend, and said the manner of the victory made it all the sweeter.
“It was unbelievable. Winning is always good but especially winning in that way will make us even more happy.
“We fought from the start until the end. So we’re glad to get three points here and we’re very happy.
“I, of course, felt a bit of pressure because I had to run a long way and the keeper had a very good day and made some unbelievable saves. But I was very calm, I tried to be calm and tried to finish well.
“This is always what I try to do. Luckily the ball went inside [the post] and I was so, so happy to see the celebration of the away fans. I think it’s just the timing and the celebration was perfect.
“Some of the games [this season] you’ve seen us turn it around. I think, for example, Olympiakos, Norwich, Southampton and now I think it’s all about character.
“I’m really happy to have this group and I’m lucky to have this quality playing with this team.”
Spurs host RB Leipzig tomorrow night in north London in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie, before travelling the short distance to Stamford Bridge to take on Chelsea away on Saturday afternoon.
Son had told Off the Ball on Sunday he was looking forward to the upcoming run of games.
“Last season we were in the Champions League final but that’s in the past and we don’t think about it too much. We just want to focus game by game and try to be ready for another big match.
“We’ll see what happens. Obviously they’re a big side and they’re doing an unbelievable job in Germany, so let’s see. I’m very excited.”
They currently sit in fifth position in the domestic standings, just one point behind Frank Lampard's Blues.
Son's injury, if he is out for the expected eight weeks, would rule him out for ten games in all at a crucial stage of the season. First-choice striker Harry Kane is already on the sidelines with a hamstring injury, while José Mourinho had said last month he felt Irish international Troy Parrott was not yet ready for regular first-team football.
Portuguese boss added to that assertion at his press conference today.
“My thoughts are that Troy Parrott is not ready and Ryan Sessegnon is not a striker.”