Former Barnsley youngster John Stones looks set to miss England’s Euro 2016 qualifiers against San Marino and Estonia after he suffered ankle ligament damage in Everton’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United.
Stones sustained the injury during the dying stages of the Toffees’ defeat on Sunday, and will be out for “a few weeks”, according to manager Roberto Martinez.
The centre-back, who left Old Trafford on crutches with a protective boot on his left leg, will be out of action for some time and will therefore not join up with Roy Hodgson’s squad on Monday.
A post on Everton’s Twitter feed read: “Martinez confirms Stones has injured his ankle ligaments and will be assessed over the next 48 hours.”
The Everton boss then said in his press conference: “John Stones has a problem with his ankle. It will be at least a few weeks (until he recovers).
“I don’t expect John to be fit for next week.
“It is such a massive blow because he plays with an incredible arrogance. We will assess him in the next 48 hours.”
The news is a big blow to Hodgson, who handed Stones his first competitive England start last month against Switzerland.
Although San Marino and Estonia are among the weakest footballing nations in Europe, the England boss would have viewed the upcoming double-header as a perfect opportunity for the 20 year old to gain more international experience.
Hodgson is already without injured defenders Kyle Walker, Glen Johnson, Jon Flanagan, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones for the games against San Marino and Estonia, which take place on Thursday and Sunday respectively.
The home side also suffered an injury scare on Sunday when Luke Shaw hobbled off in the second half after receiving a kick to the knee.