Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has revealed key midfielder Lee Cattermole will be out of action for at least 12 weeks.
However, that has come as a huge relief to Bruce, whose initial fear was the player's season could have been ended by the medial ligament damage he suffered during Saturday's 1-0 win over Liverpool.
Bruce told the Sunderland Echo: "We think it will be at least 12 weeks for Catts. He's done his medial ligament. It's not good news, but it's the best we could have hoped."
He added: "We were all praying he had not done his cruciate and damaged cartilage, which thankfully he hasn't - but he's still out for the best part of three months."
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