Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold has confirmed his skipper Alex Brosque is set to miss up to a month of football after the striker's hamstring injury was misdiagnosed.
The Sky Blues boss confirmed on Thursday that Brosque is out for “three or four weeks” with a hamstring injury initially suffered against Newcastle Jets last month.
The veteran attacker returned for the Boxing Day clash against Central Coast but lasted less than half an hour before he was forced off with the same problem.
Already missing Andrew Hoole, Alex Gersbach and Brandon O’Neill to Olyroos duty, the Sky Blues will now have to do without their influential skipper for close to a month.
“We didn’t bring him back too early, he got misdiagnosed with his scan,” Arnold said of Brosque on Thursday.
“He trained a full week before the Mariners game, he wasn’t feeling anything then 25 minutes into the game he felt it.
“It’s a blow to lose your captain but I was very happy with what George Blackwood did last week. We hope to have him [Brosque] back for the start of the Asian Champions League.”
Brosque has arguably been Sydney’s most consistent player this season and a key part of an attack that has yet to catch fire.
With the January transfer window now open, his absence might increase the need to bring in a big-name guest player for the rest of the campaign.
The Sky Blues have this week been linked with ex-German international striker Kevin Kuranyi.
While not ruling out a bringing in a guest player, Arnold says they won’t “waste” money on someone who can’t be ready to play immediately.
“We’re open to listening. But I’m not someone to waste money on guest players or marquee players if they are not fit,” the Sky Blues boss said.
“If we are looking for someone and if they fit the mould, they are also someone that has to be fit and ready to go, then we might listen.
“But if we have to bring someone out who is not playing at a club somewhere or hasn’t played for quite a long time and it’s going to take him six weeks to get fit, then it’s a waste of time.
“We are open to offers to listen but at the moment I’ve got faith in the Australian youngsters we have here.”
The Sky Blues are currently fourth on the Hyundai A-League ladder ahead of a crucial clash against the out-of-sorts Newcastle Jets at ANZ Stadium on Saturday.
Sydney has won both games against the Jets already this season – both 1-0 – and Arnold predicts another difficult encounter with Scott Miller’s side.
“We’re sitting in a good position at the moment and it’s an important game with three big points at ANZ,” he said.
“Newcastle is a desperate team, they could sign a couple of players in the next day or so.
“We need to make sure against a very strong resilient defensive team like Newcastle we have to take our chances.”