Sligo Rovers have confirmed that defender Garry Buckley has suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury which will see him out for the rest of the 2022 season and also a large part of 2023.
The injury occurred in last week’s defeat to Viking FK in The Europa Conference League third round qualifier first-leg in Stavanger.
Buckley arrived at Rovers ahead of the 2020 season from Cork City and appeared mostly as a midfielder in his first season at the club.
Since then, he has made the move back to the centre of defence and signed a contract extension in 2021 to keep him at The Showgrounds until the end of 2023.
The injury comes as a big blow to the squad as they look to overturn a 5-1 first leg deficit against Viking.
Sligo manager John Russell said: "We’re all devastated for Garry.
"He is a leader within our group and a player of immense quality so we will miss him on the pitch for the rest of this season.
"As a club we will do everything to support him on his road to recovery.
"It’s a tough moment right now for Garry but I know he will come back fitter and stronger and the fans can look forward to seeing him back on the pitch at some point in 2023."