Valencia are set to be without midfielder Nico Gonzalez for the majority of the rest of the season after he suffered a foot break on Saturday.
The 20-year-old joined Valencia on loan this summer from Barcelona in search of regular minutes, and has been in and out of the side under Gennaro Gattuso. Playing in 13 of their 15 La Liga matches so far, he has started just six of them.
In the 79th minute of their 2-1 defeat to Villarreal, Nico was forced off with an injury, which Los Che confirmed was a broken metatarsal in his foot. Valencia are now exploring treatment options.
The likelihood is that he will miss around three months of action. Previously Gattuso had commented that central midfield was not a priority for Valencia going into the transfer market, despite links to Cagliari midfielder Nahitan Nandez. That may change Valencia’s plans going forward.
For Nico, it is unfortunate timing. With Sergio Busquets’ future up in the air at parent club Barcelona, a strong run in the second half of the season might have carved out a bigger role at Barcelona next season. As it stands, he may well find himself in a similar situation to last summer; a rotational option for Xavi Hernandez.