Borussia Dortmund midfielder Axel Witsel is facing up to the prospect of several months on the sidelines after tearing his Achilles tendon in their 3-1 victory over RB Leipzig, the club said on Sunday.
The Belgium international was taken off after 30 minutes of the match on Saturday after falling to the ground without any other player near him.
"Unfortunate news. Axel Witsel suffered a torn Achilles tendon during yesterday’s match and will be out for an extended period of time," the club said in a statement on Twitter.
UEFA Nations League
Johnson grabs late equaliser as Wales draw with Belgium
11/06/2022 AT 18:24
"We all wish Axel a speedy and successful recovery."
Losing Witsel is a huge blow for BvB as the midfielder has featured in all but two games so far this season.
Dortmund, who face Sevilla in the Champions League round of 16 next month, are fourth in the Bundesliga, five points behind leaders Bayern Munich and three adrift of second-placed RB Leipzig.
The news will also be keenly felt in Belgium, as he is a key member of the national side and he faces a race against time to be fit for the European Championship this summer.
Adaditional reporting from Reuters
Bundesliga
Witsel strikes late against plucky Mainz to keep Dortmund in title race
16/03/2022 AT 16:39
Euro 2020
Witsel named in Belgium's Euro 2020 squad as he recovers from injury
17/05/2021 AT 12:19