Injury-plagued West Ham striker Diafra Sakho will be out for six weeks with a thigh problem, the club have announced.
Sakho, who recently returned to action, went off injured midway through the second half of Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United.
The results of a scan have shown that the injury is worse rather than less serious than the club feared.
It was initially thought that Sakho could face up to four weeks out.
Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, manager Slaven Bilic said: “The scan is going to show us how big the injury is. I can only hope that he isn’t going to be out for a long time.
“I don’t know if it’s going to be one week, two weeks, three weeks or four weeks or whatever.
“We have to wait for the results of the scan and then we’re going to know how many weeks we’re going to be without him.”
The 26-year-old Senegal international’s outing against United was only his second appearance for the Hammers this season.
Sakho impressed during the first, against Tottenham the previous weekend, and scored at Old Trafford before his injury curse struck yet again.
“Of course it’s a big blow for us,” Bilic admitted.
“We know what he can give to us – and he showed in the games against Spurs and United what he brings to the team.
“There is a history about his injuries. We were hoping – and also he is a hard worker – and all I can say is that it’s just very frustrating.
“He worked so hard to come back and then came back and made an impact straightaway.
“For him to again be sidelined is bad for us and awful for him.”