Michael Owen's World Cup is over after he was ruled out for the remainder of the tournament in Germany.
Owen could be out of action for up to five months after the England striker reportedly suffered cruciate ligament damage against Sweden.
The Football Association today confirmed the Newcastle player is on his way home from the England team's base in Germany.
Owen injured his right knee during the first minute of England's 2-2 draw against Sweden in Cologne and flew back to the team hotel in Baden-Baden ahead of an MRI scan this morning at the Max Grundig hospital at Buhlertal.
The 26-year-old missed the second half of last season with a metatarsal injury and Sky Sports reported this morning that he will now be out of action for a further five months.
Owen's England team-mates Rio Ferdinand and Gary Neville were also at the clinic for scans, Ferdinand on a groin injury he picked up in the Sweden game an Neville on the calf problem which has kept him out of the last two matches against Trinidad and Tobago and Sweden.
A statement from the Football Association read: "Following his injury in last night's match with Sweden, Michael Owen had his right knee scanned today and it has now been confirmed the injury will prevent Michael playing any further part in the World Cup and he will return to England immediately.
"Newcastle United have been kept fully informed of the facts and Michael's medical care will now be managed by the club. Any further comment regarding details of the injury or further treatment will be issued by Newcastle."
Owen said: "Obviously it's a massive blow to suffer the injury and be out of the World Cup.
"As soon as it happened I knew I was in trouble. It was a major disappointment to pick up the injury so early in the game and I will go back home and work with Newcastle's medical staff to put a recovery programme in place.
"I am clearly sorry to be leaving the lads in Germany but I am convinced they can go on and achieve success. I will be following all the matches very closely and giving them my full support, hopefully all the way to Berlin.
"My main objective now is to get fit as quickly as possible for Newcastle."
Newcastle are expected to make a statement later today.
The England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson said: "Michael has had terrible luck with injuries since Christmas.
"I feel very sorry for him to miss out on the rest of the World Cup - it's a blow to him and a big loss for the team.
"However, I am sure Michael will work very hard to get back as quickly as possible for Newcastle and England. He is a true professional and a very mentally strong person.
"I hope the team can now go on and achieve success in Germany for Michael."Reuse content