Hartlepool United boss Craig Hignett has been dealt a bitter blow with the news that keeper Trevor Carson has been ruled out for the rest of the season.
Having been sent to see a specialist this afternoon the Northern Irishman has been told that he requires surgery on a long-standing shoulder injury.
And a result he will miss the rest of the current campaign.
In fact, he could even miss the build up to next season, with six months recovery following on from the op, which has been pencilled in for a fortnight's time.
Head physio Ian Gallagher explained the Carson has been playing through the pain barrier in recent months.
It is understood that injury was originally suffered last season.
Gallagher, who accompanied Carson to see a top shoulder specialist in Liverpool earlier today, confirmed to the club website: "Trevor will have surgery two weeks today and could be out for up to six months afterwards.
"It’s an exploratory operation where the surgeon will go in, find the damage and then repair what he sees but it’s very likely he will now be missing for the rest of the season.
"Credit to Trevor, he’s been putting up with a lot of pain for quite some time now and he’s been determined to play in every game but it’s got to the point where we’ve had to do something about it.
"He’s such a professional and shown his commitment by getting out there and playing when others wouldn’t have, but enough is enough now and this surgery is the only option."
The news comes as a massive blow to manager Craig Hignett.
He is understandably devastated by his goalkeeper's injury woe.
Hignett said: "Trev has had this problem for a while and it’s a credit to him that he’s played on for so long.
"Obviously it’s a blow to lose him but Adam is a more than capable understudy and now he’s got the chance to come in and be our number one.
"There’s no worry from me on that front; I’ve said before that in my opinion we’re lucky to have two of the best keepers in this division so it’s bad news for Trev but thankfully we have Adam to step in."