West Brom boss Roy Hodgson claims there is no chance of Shane Long being fit for Republic of Ireland's Euro 2012 play-off with Estonia.
Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni has named the Baggies striker in his squad despite being fully aware that he is nursing a knee problem.
He had been hoping that Long would shake off the knock quicker than expected and put himself in contention.
The clock is ticking, though, and the 24-year-old remains some way off a return to competitive action.
Long was originally ruled out for up to six weeks and Hodgson admits it is looking increasingly likely that he will be sidelined for that length of time.
He said: "Shane is not fit to play. The two doctors are in contact with each other and the Irish doctor knows that he is making good progress and we are working hard with him.
"But he is way off being fit to play a football match.
"If they want to prove that by inviting him over and sending him back again, that's okay with me.
"But there is no way unfortunately he will be fit to play for us at the weekend or for Ireland.
"In fact, there is a lot of work to be done if he is going to be fit to play after the international break."
Hodgson added: "Ireland might just want to see him anyway. To be fair, we've got the Monday off in this international break with a lot of players away.
"If Giovanni wants to see him and invite him over there, then fine, but there is no medical examination which will change what is an obvious verdict.
"It is going to take some time to heal. The initial suggestion was six weeks and Shane would like it to be quicker than that, but it certainly isn't going to be two weeks."