Sheffield United manager Kevin Blackwell is waiting to discover the extent of a rib injury suffered by Chris Morgan but fears he may have no choice but to venture back into the loan market.
Morgan was forced off before half-time in Tuesday's 3-0 defeat to Watford and is a major doubt for the clash with Derby this weekend.
It remains to be seen how long the defender might be out for but Blackwell is not too optimistic about his chances of a swift recovery.
Having already lost Kyle Walker to Tottenham before the transfer deadline, Blackwell may now be forced to look for reinforcements when the loan window reopens.
"Morgs looks like he's popped it or broken it," he told the Sheffield Star.
"To be honest he's the last person I need to lose at the moment.
"We'll have to see how he is before deciding whether we'll have to try and bring someone else in again."
Walker had been on a season-long loan at Bramall Lane but Spurs exercised their right to recall him and Blackwell admits the Blades were completely powerless.
He explained: "There was nothing we could do about it. Spurs were perfectly within their rights to do what they did.
"We only found out with 15 minutes to go that the paperwork was being lodged so there was no time to try and do some business elsewhere.
"I hadn't expected Kyle to go back so it came as a surprise.
"But football, unfortunately, is full of surprises."