Nice striker Mario Balotelli facing spell on sidelines with injury

Mario Balotelli will miss at least three games after picking up an injury in training with Ligue 1 leaders Nice.

Balotelli, 26, was absent as Nice were knocked out of the Europa League at Schalke on Thursday having injured himself while shooting in training 48 hours earlier.

"He'll miss the next three games that come in 10 days, that's a certainty," Nice coach Lucien Favre told media after his team's 2-0 defeat in Gelsenkirchen. "After that, we're not sure."

Following Nice's league game with Bastia on Sunday, Balotelli will also be sidelined for the Ligue 1 encounter with Guingamp next Wednesday and the home game against Toulouse the following weekend.

After that trio of games, Nice, who currently head the French top flight by three points from Monaco and Paris Saint-Germain, have five further competitive outings before Christmas, including a trip to PSG on Dec. 11.

Balotelli, who joined Nice from Liverpool on a one-year deal last summer, has scored six goals in as many Ligue 1 games for the club.