Stefanutto out for the year

Bottom-placed North Queensland Fury's worst fears have been confirmed with defender Shane Stefanutto ruled out for the rest of the 2009/10 Hyundai A-League season due to a serious knee injury.

Bottom-placed North Queensland Fury's worst fears have been confirmed with defender Shane Stefanutto ruled out for the rest of the 2009/10 Hyundai A-League season due to a serious knee injury.

The 29-year-old injured his right knee in a clash with Perth's Adriano Pellegrino in the 31st minute of Saturday's 1-1 draw with the Glory at ME Bank Stadium and was stretchered from the field.

Stefanutto had scans done in Perth on Saturday night and while the full extent of the injury hasn't been confirmed, there's a strong likelihood that he has ruptured his ACL.

In a further blow for Stefanutto the injury will almost certainly spell the end of his World Cup selection chances even if he recovers in time for June next year.

"He's been one of our better players and now he's out for the season," coach Ian Ferguson said.

"There didn't look to be much in the challenge and the next thing he's being stretchered off."

"I thought he'd rolled his ankle - it's a terrible blow for the club and for Shane."

"That's his World Cup aspirations gone."

The club will seek surgical advice later in the week.

The news continues a bad run of injury for North Queensland with Jacob Timpano, Scott Wilson and Karl Dodd, who won't be available for another five weeks, all already missing, or set to miss, big chunks of the Fury's debut season.

"We'll have to reshuffle the team and look at what we can do for next week," Ferguson said.

"Unfortunately these injuries happen in football and hopefully it won't be too bad for Shane."