Mark Hudson looks set to miss the remainder of Cardiff's promotion push after picking up an ankle injury.
The Bluebirds skipper damaged ligaments during a recent clash with Leicester City and the centre-half will be forced to undergo surgery.
With there only nine games of the season remaining, it is unlikely that Hudson will appear again this term.
Cardiff boss Malky Mackay has confirmed as much, with his side hoping to wrap up the Championship title and allow their captain to return as a Premier League player in 2013/14.
Mackay said: "I will never say no to anything, but Mark will probably not play again this season.
"It's a blow for the player, he's been a top performer for us and, as our captain, Mark is one of our leaders.
"But he's still here, in the dressing room to help out, even though he won't be playing."