West Bromwich Albion midfielder Chris Brunt’s miserable few weeks hit a new low on Thursday when he discovered he will miss Northern Ireland’s Euro 2016 campaign with a knee injury.
Brunt was carried off on Saturday after landing awkwardly in the first half of Albion’s 3-2 Premier League win over Crystal Palace and scans have shown the damage is serious enough to rule him out for six months.
The 31-year-old has ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and he underwent surgery on Thursday, leaving him no chance of recovering in time for his country’s first ever appearance at the European Championships in France.
“It’s a big blow for Chris and everyone is feeling for him right now,” Albion manager Tony Pulis told the club’s official site.
“It will be disappointing for us not to have him for the rest of the season because he is a terrific player who gives the team great balance.
“But obviously it is made even more cruel because it has denied him a career highlight with Northern Ireland this summer.”
Brunt, who had his surgery in Lyon, has 54 caps for Northern Ireland and will miss their games against Poland, Ukraine and Germany in France.
He is Albion’s longest serving current player and has made 314 appearances for club.
Brunt’s injury blow was the latest piece of ill fortune suffered by the star recently after he was hit in the head by coins thrown by angry Albion fans when he went to give his shirt to a supporter at the end of the team’s shock FA Cup fifth round loss at second tier Reading.
Police, who have made an arrest, are treating the incident as assault.