Socceroo winger Mathew Leckie is set for an indefinite spell on the sidelines as his club look to get on top of his troublesome abdominal injury.
Leckie has been battling the problem for the last couple of weeks with his Bundesliga 2. club FC Ingolstadt 04 confirming he will miss at least their next two matches.
The 23-year-old, who was one of the Socceroos best at the World Cup, played 72 minutes of Ingolstadt’s season-opener a fortnight ago before coming off the bench a week later against Darmstadt.
It’s understood Leckie will now undergo an intense rehab program with the club’s medical staff as they aim to put the injury problem behind them.
"This is always a difficult situation. The player always wants more than is good for him and you have to slow him down,” Ingolstadt boss Ralph Hasenhuttl told the Donau Kurier.
“Mathew must resolve his problems and then work on the basics.”
Leckie had an interrupted pre-season schedule due to his late return to training after his Brazil campaign.
Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou will certainly be keeping an eye on Leckie’s recovery, especially as the former Adelaide United flyer will be a key cog at the Asian Cup in January.
Meanwhile, Australian born defender Brad Smith has returned to parent-club Liverpool for treatment on a knee injury.
Smith is on a season-long loan at Massimo Luongo’s Swindon Town and picked up the injury in the club’s Capital One Cup win at Luton on Tuesday.
While it was initially feared the left-back would miss more than a month with a ligament tear, further tests have shown a small fracture in the knee.
Town manager Mark Cooper hopes to have Smith back on board for the club’s clash with Crewe clash next weekend.
“We think Brad Smith may be available next weekend so we’re not going to rush to bring anyone in for a couple of games,” he said.
“We believe he may have a small fracture on the top of his knee bone, so it’s not knee ligament damage which makes it easier to heal.”
Leckie: Socceroos have proved the doubters wrong
Mathew Leckie believes the Socceroos have proved the critics wrong at the FIFA World Cup™ but now wants to turn positive performances into points in their crucial clash against Peru. As the lowest-ranked nation in Group C, Australia was expected to struggle at the tournament a
Opponent Watch: Peruvian star hospitalised ahead of Socceroos clash
Peru’s preparation for the crucial Group C clash against the Socceroos has suffered a blow with a star attacker sent to hospital after he was knocked unconscious in training. There’s been some high praise for a couple of French strikers while Denmark let their hair down with s
Russia Watch: Germany saved embarrassment by late Kroos winner
Germany has come back from the brink of a humiliating early FIFA World Cup™ exit, scoring a stoppage-time winner to break Swedish hearts. Elsewhere, Javier Hernandez scored a landmark goal as Mexico continued their dream start to the tournament, while Belgium put in a five-sta
Day 35 Wrap: Sightseeing, cards and haircuts on rare day off
The Caltex Socceroos may be just three days away from their must-win FIFA World Cup™ clash against Peru but coach Bert van Marwijk gave the players a rare day off to recharge the batteries. While Saturday morning’s usual media commitments – where three players are put up for p