Rangers full-back Steven Whittaker has undergone a hernia operation and will be out for at least six weeks, the club have announced.
The full-back travelled south of the border with club doctor Paul Jackson for a consultation this morning after suffering from groin problems recently.
It was determined he would need surgery and went under the knife immediately and is now out for all of this month and most of February.
Whittaker, whose last appearance was on Christmas Eve against St Mirren, will miss Scottish Premier League games against St Johnstone, Aberdeen, Hibernian, Dunfermline, Kilmarnock and probably Inverness as well.
Likewise, the Scotland international miss the home William Hill Scottish Cup clash with Dundee United at Ibrox on Saturday, February 5.
Whittaker could be fit in time for Scotland's away friendly with Slovenia on February 29 but it is unlikely he will be risked which means a realistic comeback date could be on March 3, when the Light Blues entertain Hearts at Ibrox.
Replacement full-back Kirk Broadfoot has also been struggling with a knee problem and he is having a scan on that on Tuesday night as he looks to step up his recovery.