Hamburg lose injured de Jong

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The Independent Football

Hamburg will be without midfielder Nigel de Jong for the rest of the calendar year through injury.

The Netherlands midfielder, who has only just returned to action after a knee ligament injury picked up while on international duty, suffered a recurrence while training this week and is unlikely to play again until after the Bundesliga's winter break.

He is now set to miss four league games and the UEFA Cup group stages matches against Ajax, Slavia Prague and Aston Villa.

"I think that I will only be able to play again after the winter break," he confirmed.

Meanwhile, reports from Turin suggest Bayern Munich’s Germany international Bastian Schweinsteiger is a target for Juventus.

The Serie A giants are keen to sign a replacement for Pavel Nedved in January and, according to Tuttosport, Schweinsteiger is at the top of director of sport Alessio Secco’s list.

Secco was at the friendly international in Berlin on Wednesday between Germany and England to watch the 24-year-old whose contract runs out at the end of this season.

Bayern are keen to offer Schweinsteiger a new deal but Juve are believed to be willing to give him a lucrative five-year contract.