Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has revealed that he will be out until at least February with his knee injury.
The 23-year-old Nigeria international picked up the knock during the defeat to Arsenal in December and is set for further time on the sidelines.
With Carlo Ancelotti's Blues struggling in the Premier League and currently lying nine points behind leaders Manchester United having played a game more, it is another blow to their title ambitions.
Mikel admits that he is disappointed by the setback and is hoping the team can improve in his absence.
"I am very disappointed by this injury, it will at least take me out for the whole month," he told skysports.com.
"It is a big blow for myself and for the team, we are struggling at the moment and we need everyone all together to help the team.
"I think we lack belief at the moment, that happens with all teams, hopefully we will have a strong feeling and we will fight hard to be amongst the top teams.
"We are the champions so we need to go for the best trophies."
Mikel controversially arrived at Stamford Bridge in 2006 from Lyn Oslo and has made more than 150 appearances for the club.