Barcelona starlet Ansu Fati is set to undergo surgery on a knee injury on Monday and is facing the possibility of missing up to five months of action.
The teenager was brought off at half-time in Saturday's 5-2 win over Real Betis, with the club later confirming that he had damaged the meniscus in his left knee.
Barça have been reluctant to put a time frame on his recovery, and as noted by Mundo Deportivo, that is because they are yet to determine which surgical approach will be needed to best rectify the problem.
The worst-case scenario, which is currently thought to be the most-likely option, would be to repair the meniscus in Monday's surgery, which could lead to a recovery period of between three and five months.
There is also the option to completely remove the meniscus, which would only leave Fati on the sidelines for around six weeks, but there is a hesitancy to take that approach as it could lead to more operations down the line for a young player who has already complained of knee discomfort in the past.
The surgeon conducting the operation, Dr. Ramon Cugat, is waiting until he gets a closer look at Fati's knee before making a decision, but it is expected that Barcelona will urge Fati to take an extended period on the sidelines now to avoid a lengthy battle with knee troubles down the line.
The 18-year-old is no stranger to major injuries. Back in December 2015, Fati suffered a nasty double leg break which forced him into a ten-month period on the recovery table, but fortunately, this latest problem is not thought to be as severe.
The injury comes as a huge blow to Ronald Koeman, who had seen Fati prove himself as one of Barcelona's most important players during the early weeks of the season.
The boss will hope that Fati's injury does not derail his side's momentum as four of his attacking options managed to get on the score sheet against Betis: Pedri, Antoine Griezmann, Ousmane Dembele and substitute Lionel Messi, who came off the bench to net twice.
Francisco Trincao, Martin Braithwaite and Philippe Coutinho, the latter of whom is currently sidelined with a hamstring injury, will also be available for selection after the international break, meaning Koeman still has plenty of options at his disposal.