UEFA Europa League hopefuls FC Schalke 04 will be deprived of the services of Benedikt Höwedes for the next few weeks after the Germany defender suffered a torn muscle fibre in his left thigh in Bundesliga action on Saturday.
The 24-year-old sustained the injury during Schalke's 2-1 defeat at SC Freiburg and had to be replaced after 53 minutes. "My foot got caught up in the pitch while I was sprinting and that's when I felt a sudden pain going through my thigh," explained Höwedes on his club's website.
It is the third injury Höwedes has suffered this season, following a knee problem and a broken cheekbone. As a result, Schalke will face FC Twente without the centre-back in their UEFA Europa League round of 16 opener in the Netherlands on Thursday, as well as the return meeting in Gelsenkirchen a week later.
©UEFA.com 1998-2016. All rights reserved.