Villarreal have confirmed that Giuseppe Rossi will be sidelined for six months after sustaining a serious knee injury.
The Italy international came off in the second half of his side's 3-0 La Liga defeat against Real Madrid on Wednesday, being replaced by Mario Gaspar.
Medical tests have shown that the 24-year-old has a torn anterior cruciate ligament tear in his right knee, with an estimated recovery time of six months.
Rossi is currently at the 9 de Octubre hospital in Valencia, where will be operated on the problem by doctor Enrique Gastaldi on Thursday evening.
The news comes as a heavy blow to Villarreal, who are struggling in the league with just seven points from nine games.
Fellow striker Nilmar has already been out of action for a month, also with a knee injury, and it will take the Brazilian at least another four weeks to get back to full fitness.