Chelsea midfielder Juan Sebastian Veron will be out for three months after an operation to cure a back injury.
The 27-year-old decided to have surgery in Argentina where team doctors first discovered the problem when he was on international duty last November.
Veron has only played 11 times for Chelsea since his £15m-move from Manchester United in August.
The midfielder has set his sights on returning to full fitness in time for
Chelsea's trip to Old Trafford in May.
Veron was forced to miss the 1-0 victory over his old club in November after aggravating his back injury during Argentina's 1-1 draw with Colombia in a World Cup qualifier.
The midfielder has had surgery on a herniated disc - this is where a ruptured disc in the spine presses down on the nerves causing some discomfort.