Sale fly-half Charlie Hodgson faces a race against time to be fit in time for the RBS Six Nations.
Hodgson, who acted as back up to Toby Flood during Investec Internationals and started against Samoa, has suffered a fracture to his foot.
The Sharks had initially hoped the injury was just bruising however an X-ray has confirmed a more serious problem.
Sale are now expecting Hodgson to be out of action until "well into the new year".
Hodgson is the latest Sale star to be sideline, with Eifion Roberts, Neil Briggs, David Seymour, Tom Brady, Aston Croall and James Gaskell all facing lengthy spells out.