Liverpool defender Jose Enrique is facing an extended spell out after manager Brendan Rodgers revealed the Spanish full-back will require surgery on a long-term knee problem.
Enrique has carried the injury for much of the season but did make a substitute appearance in the win over Fulham prior to the international break.
However, Rodgers says Enrique must go under the knife to correct the problem and could now be out until the New Year.
"It's ok," Rodgers told talkSPORT of Liverpool's injury situation. "We've got a small squad, a mixture of experience and young players.
"Jose Enrique has been struggling for a little while with an injury. We'll look at him but he will probably need an operation. It's a blow for us because he's a very talented player.
"All in all our medical team are superb here. They really focus on the individual and thankfully in the time I've been here they're really helped with the availability of players.
"You can have as good a squad as you want but it's no good if they're not available. You have to have joined up thinking in order to keep the players available for as long as you can and thankfully I've done that."
The blow comes on the eve of Rodgers' 50th game in charge of Liverpool in the Merseyside derby against Everton at Goodison Park.
Luis Suarez will be available for the game despite playing for Uruguay in the second leg of their World Cup play-off against Jordan in Montevideo on Wednesday.
Suarez has been flown in via the club's owners private jet in order to have time to sufficiently recover ahead of trip to Everton, leaving Rodgers delighted.
"We tried to get him back as soon as we could," Rodgers added. "If he were to come back in a normal flight he would be back on Friday. We tried to get him back as early as we can to get him rested.
"He flew back straight after the [Uruguay] game, the owners very kindly donated their jet so he'll arrive in on Thursday. That allows him to sleep in his own bed tonight."