Sunderland midfielder Graham Kavanagh will miss the rest of the season after suffering an ankle injury in training.
Kavanagh joined the club from Wigan
Kavanagh, 33, was nearing a return to full fitness after a lengthy spell out recovering from a knee injury before his latest setback.
"It was touch and go whether he would have got involved anyway but he won't now," Sunderland boss Roy Keane told the club's website.
"It's a blow to the lad because he has worked extremely hard to get back."
Sunderland lead the Championship title and seem set to be automatically promoted with games against Colchester, Burnley and Luton left to play.
Keane added: "You are going to get injuries, especially when you tackle like Kav does.
"We'll just make sure he's ready for next season."