Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane damaged a thigh muscle in Wednesday’s Champions League match at Shakhtar Donetsk, the La Liga club revealed on Friday following tests at a clinic in the Spanish capital.
Real did not say how long the France international, who had to come off after half an hour of the 4-3 victory in Lviv, would be sidelined but local media reported he would be out for three weeks.
Varane’s injury is more bad news for coach Rafa Benitez, with captain and centre back Sergio Ramos, who sat out the Shakhtar match, still out with a shoulder problem.
Varane, 22, will most likely miss Sunday’s La Liga game at Eibar and the match at home to Getafe the following weekend, as well as the Champions League clash at Malmo on December 8.
Benitez is likely to fall back on Pepe and Nacho in central defence if Ramos remains unavailable.
Real are already through to the last 16 of Europe’s elite club competition as section winners and are third in La Liga after 12 matches, two points behind second-placed Atletico Madrid and six adrift of leaders and champions Barcelona.
They also play their King’s Cup last 32, first leg at third-tier Cadiz on Wednesday