Wayne Rooney could miss the World Cup after he broke a bone in his right foot during Manchester United's 3-0 clash against Chelsea.
The 20-year-old has been told he may be out for six weeks, exactly the same amount of time before England kick-off their World Cup campaign on 10 June.
Rooney was carried off the pitch on Saturday after an apparently harmless tackle by Chelsea's Paulo Ferreira.
The top striker broke a bone in the same foot during Euro 2004.
England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson is understood to have said he will take Rooney to the World Cup if there is a chance the striker will be fit for the knockout stages.
He will name his planned World Cup squad on 8 May, and the definite one on 15 May.
Rooney has broken one of the five long bones in his right foot, called a metatarsal.
When he broke one of these bones during England's quarter-final defeat by Portugal in Euro 2004 it took him three months to fully recover.
David Beckham was in a very similar position before the last World Cup in 2002.
He broke his fifth metatarsal nearly eight weeks before the tournament began, and managed to play but later admitted he was not fit enough.