Stoke attacker Bojan Krkic will miss the remainder of the current season after suffering a serious cruciate knee injury in Monday's 4-1 FA Cup win at Rochdale, the club have confirmed.
Former Barcelona starlet Bojan has been a huge success at Stoke this term, scoring key goals in wins over Tottenham, Arsenal and Everton.
The 24-year-old's most recent contribution was a superb volley to open the scoring in Monday's FA Cup fourth-round win at Rochdale, but he was later substituted with a serious-looking knee injury.
Reports in Spain earlier on Tuesday had indicated his season was over, and the club confirmed the news on their official website later.
The statement read: "Stoke City can confirm Bojan will miss the remainder of the season after sustaining a knee ligament injury in last night's FA Cup win over Rochdale.
"The Spanish forward opened the scoring after just four minutes at Rochdale as the Potters ran out 4-1 winners but limped out of the action in the 32nd minute after collapsing while challenging for the ball.
"Scans have revealed he suffered a ruptured cruciate ligament in his left knee and will have to undergo surgery."
Manager Mark Hughes added: "It's bitterly disappointing for the club but even more so for Bojan himself as he was making such a big impact on the Premier League and clearly enjoying his football. We wish him a speedy recovery."
Bojan's former Barcelona captain Carles Puyol was quickly on Twitter to offer his support upon hearing the news: "Cheer up friend!," Puyol tweeted. "A strong hug."
Ànims amic @BoKrkic abraçada forta!!!
- Carles Puyol (@Carles5puyol) January 27, 2015
Another ex-Blaugrana colleague also offered his best wishes via the social network. "Cheer up," tweeted current Sevilla winger Gerard Deulofeu. "You will return even stronger."
Ánim @BoKrkic ! Tornaràs mes fort.
- Gerard Deulofeu (@gerardeulofeu) January 27, 2015
According to Sport, the injury means Stoke boss and former Camp Nou striker Mark Hughes could up his efforts to secure one or both of current Barca youngsters Adama Traore and Sandro Ramirez on loan during the current transfer window.