Werder Bremen have been dealt a blow in their battle survival after it was confirmed that Sambou Yatabaré would miss their two remaining matches this season.
The news was announced on Wednesday following an MRI scan late on Tuesday afternoon, which revealed the torn right thigh muscle.
Yatabaré came off during the first half of Werder's 6-2 win over VfB Stuttgart, the Bundesliga's first-ever Monday night game.
The Mali international arrived at the Weserstadion in January, as Viktor Skripnik shelled out €2.5m for his services.
Yatabaré has settled well in his eight Bundesliga appearances to date, giving renewed energy down the wing and freeing up the dynamic Fin Bartels to move onto the left.
The 27-year-old seems to be thriving after spending his last two years on loan. Olympiakos rarely used the versatile midfielder despite paying over €2m to SC Bastia for him.
Can Werder replace him?
Head coach Skripnik was annoyed to lose a key man this late in the season, but tried to remain positive.
He said, "Unfortunately, our suspicions have been confirmed. It's bitter. We now have to do without Sambou in the last two games."
The Ukrainian added, "But, on Monday, we have already shown that we have the quality, we adapt to new situations and other players can take responsibility."
The former Bremen player wasn't wrong, as they went on to put a further four goals past a sorry Stuttgart side on Monday evening to aid their survival battle.
Levin Öztunali, his replacement after 36 minutes, came on to great effect and scored just six minutes after being brought on.
Bremen face a trip to 1. FC Köln this weekend before finishing off against Eintracht Frankfurt, in what looks to be a relegation decider.