Stoke City captain Ryan Shawcross is set to miss this Saturday’s Premier League clash with Manchester United through injury.
Manager Mark Hughes revealed in his pre-match press conference that the defender will likely be sidelined at the weekend due to a back problem.
Shawcross, who recently penned a new four-year deal, has played every minute of the Potters’ 2017/18 league season.
Shawcross likely to be sidelined
Mark Hughes started with three centre-backs in the win over West Brom with Shawcross partnering new signings Bruno Martins Indi and Kurt Zouma.
The Welshman will likely be without his captain when the league leaders make the trip to the bet365 Stadium, though, after Shawcross sustained an injury during training this week.
"Unfortunately Ryan Shawcross has pulled up in training and is likely to miss certainly the weekend, hopefully it won't be any longer," said the Stoke manager.
"He's got an issue with his back. It's not what he's had before in terms of disc injuries, it's ligaments around the back and we have to wait for him to settle down.
"It's unfortunate because he's started the season really well and signing the contract was important for him and us.
"We were always confident the deal would be signed. It's good news but a shame he's injured. He's going to be here for a long time and that's the key."
Choupo-Moting a doubt
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting is also a doubt for the visit of United after picking up a knock whilst on international duty with Cameroon.
The former Schalke forward, who made his debut at Goodison Park on the opening day, is one of a number of other Stoke players to return from the international break with small niggles.
"We had a few issues coming out of international break. (Eric Maxim) Choupo-Moting came off in his first game with a hamstring, we checked yesterday and we're hopeful but there's a little bit of doubt," said Hughes.
"A number of the others came back with little niggles but they won't be the type of injury to stop players playing."
Stoke will have to be at full strength for the encounter with Jose Mourinho's side. The Red Devils remain at the summit of the Premier League table after a flawless start to the season.
The Potters have won one and lost one against last term’s top seven after defeat to Everton and a win over Arsenal at home.