Melbourne City coach Warren Joyce fears key defender Osama Malik may not play again this season due to a niggling thigh injury.
Malik hasn’t played for City since February 4, having sustained the injury with his final kick in the warm-up prior to City’s 4-0 home loss to Sydney FC.
The 27-year-old defender won’t play in City’s clash away to Adelaide United on Friday night either and Joyce couldn’t put a timeframe on his return.
“You don’t know with that type of injury and the location of the injury is a tricky one,” Joyce said.
“We’ve been going softly softly to get him 100 per cent, whenever he can get right.
“It’s not a timescale thing that you can push because it’s a muscle injury.”
Joyce said City had struggled to handle Malik’s absence, having lost all three games without him.
“I think he’s been a loss for us,” the Englishman said.
“We’ve not handled it as well as we should. We’ve got to deal with it now.
“We’ve worked on things this week to accommodate it.
“It’s up to the players now to do the things to accommodate him not playing.”