United defender Smalling sidelined for ten weeks

Manchester United FC could be without Chris Smalling for the start of their UEFA Champions League campaign after the defender was ruled out for up to ten weeks with a foot injury.

Chris Smalling missed UEFA EURO 2012 with a groin injury
Chris Smalling missed UEFA EURO 2012 with a groin injury ©Getty Images

Manchester United FC defender Chris Smalling looks set to be absent for the start of the new season after undergoing an operation on a metatarsal injury.

Smalling missed out on England's UEFA EURO 2012 campaign with a groin problem and now faces another spell on the sidelines having picked up a blow to his foot on Wednesday. "Straight away, we decided to have the operation, so he's out," said United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. "It's difficult to say with a metatarsal, but it could be ten weeks. He's not carrying any luck, but he's young and we've done the right thing in getting it done immediately and getting him back on the road as quickly as we can."

Smalling made 19 Premier League appearances last term and featured in four of United's UEFA Champions League games. The Red Devils will go straight into the group stage of Europe's premier club competition once again this term, having finished second in the English top flight last season.