Tottenham full-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto is set to miss most of January after suffering a groin strain, boss Harry Redknapp has confirmed.
Assou-Ekotto, 25, has withdrawn from Cameroon's African Nations Cup squad and requires an injection next week for the injury, but it is understood he will not require an operation.
It is a double blow for Spurs manager Redknapp as England winger Aaron Lennon has been ruled out for a fortnight with a similar problem.
"Benoit is having an an injection on Monday," Redknapp said. "And he will be out for a few weeks.
"He has been terrific. Two terrific players, him and Lennon, have both picked up groin strains. It's a big blow to us. They are two outstanding players."
Gareth Bale is set to deputise for Assou-Ekotto at left-back but Redknapp has still not decided how to replace Lennon on the right flank.
David Bentley is an obvious choice but Luka Modric has returned from a fractured fibula, while Niko Kranjcar's form has impressed Redknapp.
Redknapp added: "I could play Krancjar and Modric wide. Modric could play on the right just as easily as on the left. The two Croatian boys are fantastic technicians and great footballers."
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