Bojan Krkic injury: Stoke worried forward may not be back in time for pre-season

Spanish forward ruptured cruciate ligament in the win against Rochdale

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Stoke City fear that Bojan Krkic’s rupture of the cruciate ligament in his left knee is serious enough that he may not be back in time for pre-season in July-August, ahead of the 2015-2016 season.

The Spanish attacker fell awkwardly during Stoke’s 4-1 win over Rochdale in the FA Cup fourth round on Monday night, just after the half hour mark. The star of Stoke’s season, who had opened the scoring on Monday night, he is now looking at a long lay-off with no chance of featuring again before the end of this season.

While cruciate ligament ruptures are no longer the career-ending injuries they once were, there are often complications during rehabilitation. Jay Rodriguez, the Southampton and England striker, has been out for nine months since he ruptured his cruciate in early April last year.

Theo Walcott has still made just two starts for Arsenal since returning from his cruciate ligament injury on 5 January, and the subsequent problems he endured.

Bojan’s stoke team-mate Peter Crouch tweeted that the injury was “terrible news … I’m certain he will come back stronger”.

Signed from Barcelona last summer, Bojan took some time to adapt to English football but has established himself in the Stoke side and given Mark Hughes’ team a new dimension. The 24-year-old is a very popular figure among the Stoke players.

Having returned to Barcelona in the summer of 2013, following a spell at Roma, and then Milan on loan, he played at Ajax for a year on loan. He joined Stoke last summer for around pnds1m.