Tottenham defender Ledley King has undergone a knee operation this afternoon and will be out of action for up to six weeks.
Spurs coach Martin Jol confirmed that King, who injured his knee in training, would be out until October following surgery on his damaged cartilage.
After Tottenham's friendly win over Inter Milan yesterday, Jol was hopeful King's problem was not as serious as first feared.
But a further scan on his knee revealed the England international required an operation to cure the problem.
Jol admitted King's absence would be a big blow to his plans but he had plenty in reserve with Calum Davenport and Anthony Gardner uppermost in his thoughts.
'Ledley had an operation this afternoon and he will be back playing in five or six weeks,' said Jol.
'We have to get on with it but it is a blow. Ledley is one of our best players and one of the best defenders in England. But I think we will solve the problem from within the ranks.'
But Jol refused talk about increasing speculation that Spurs had increased their offer for Wigan right-back Pascal Chimbonda in a cash-plus-player deal that would see Republic of Ireland midfielder Andy Reid going in the opposite direction.
When quizzed on whether Spurs had renewed their interest in the player, Jol responded: 'I cannot comment on that.'
But Jol insisted he was determined to hang on to the rest of his squad after Michael Carrick's departure to Manchester United for £18.6 million.
Jermain Defoe is still interesting Liverpool but while Jol acknowledges that Carrick's departure shows the improvement in his squad, he does not want anyone else to leave.
'We are always determined to hang on to our top players but it is not a matter of one player, we are a team.
'We have one sentence in the dressing room - `our star is the team'. So it is not about one player.'