Real Madrid midfielder Sami Khedira will miss the rest of the season and possibly next summer's World Cup finals after undergoing knee surgery - a blow which will likely end Chelsea and Manchester United's recent pursuit of the Germany international.
Khedira was replaced by Sven Bender after 67 minutes during Germany's 1-1 friendly draw against Italy in Milan but the 26 year old was only expected to miss the game with England on Tuesday.
However, after a later scan revealed the full extent of the damage Khedira has gone under the knife to correct anterior and medial ligament damage which he suffered, forcing him out for the remainder of the campaign and throwing into serious doubt his participation in next year's World Cup finals in Brazil.
"Real Madrid player Sami Khedira successfully underwent ACL and MCL surgery on his right knee," a club statement read.
"The surgery took place in Augsburg's Hessingpark-Clinic and was performed by Dr. Ulrich Boenisch under the supervision Real Madrid's Sanitas Medical Services doctors Jesús Olmo and Francisco Morate.
"The player will stay in Augsburg over the next three weeks to follow a specific recovery plan to properly heal the injured ligaments under the continual supervision of Real Madrid's Sanitas Medical Services."
Germany boss Joachim Low added: "It's a bitter blow for Sami and for us all. He is a great fighter, on and off the pitch. He's always positive. That will help him and so I'm optimistic that he'll be fit again before the World Cup kicks off in Brazil."
The news now all-but ends Chelsea and United's pursuit of Khedira, with both clubs linked with a move in the January transfer window for the former Stuttgart midfielder.
Jose Mourinho was heavily linked with signing Khedira from Real in the New Year after managing him during the pair's days at the Bernabeu, while United, looking to ease their troubles in midfield were rumoured with making a second bid for his services after missing out in the summer.
The German himself confirmed that Real turned down a bid from United in the twilight of the summer window, one of a number of players David Moyes failed to land during his opening months in charge.
Chelsea's hopes of signing Khedira had rested on capitalising on the player's desire to leave after the sale of Mesut Ozil to Arsenal and his public criticism of Real, who he claimed would make him a scapegoat in future matches.
Despite being overrun with midfield players, Khedira's relationship with Mourinho from their time in Madrid would likely have made him first choice at Chelsea and therefore a viable replacement for Frank Lampard.