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Page last updated at 17:36 GMT, Sunday, 17 August 2008 18:36 UK

Bojinov faces six-month lay-off

Valeri Bojinov
Bojinov has only made four appearances for Manchester City

Manchester City striker Valeri Bojinov faces six months on the sidelines after snapping his Achilles tendon before Sunday's defeat by Aston Villa.

The 22-year-old Bulgarian forward had been set to make his first start since injuring his knee ligaments a year ago but was injured in the warm-up.

"It is a huge blow for Valeri," City boss Mark Hughes told BBC Sport.

"He has had a terrible spell with injury. We are all disappointed for him but he will have to come back again."

Bojinov was replaced up front by Ched Evans in a game City lost 4-2.

His absence is the latest striker setback for Hughes, who is already without Benjani Mwaruwari and Darius Vassell (both injured) and Jo, who is at the Olympics.

Hughes is now likely to step up his bid for Blackburn striker Roque Santa Cruz after having a bid for the Paraguyan rejected last week.

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Former boss Sven-Goran Eriksson signed Bojinov from Fiorentina in the summer of 2007 for 5.75m but he has played only a total of 75 minutes for the first team in four separate appearances.

On his first start for the club, against Manchester United in August 2007, he lasted only a few minutes before sustaining the knee injury that ruled him out of the rest of that campaign.

He recovered and looked impressive in friendly games this summer while he regained his full fitness.

"Valeri had worked really hard," added Hughes. "He did really well in pre-season and I picked him to start against Villa on merit because of that.

"His injury was not the ideal preparation for the match because the other players understood how upset he was. It was hard to take."


see also
Aston Villa 4-2 Man City
17 Aug 08 |  Premier League
Man City fail in Santa Cruz bid
14 Aug 08 |  Blackburn
Injured Vassell out for 10 weeks
13 Aug 08 |  Man City
Man City warned over striker Jo
12 Aug 08 |  Man City
Man City complete record Jo deal
03 Jul 08 |  Man City
Man City rocked by Bojinov injury
20 Aug 07 |  Man City
Bojinov seals switch to Man City
03 Aug 07 |  Man City


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