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United States midfielder Kenny Saief out at least two months

Mark Donaldson and Herculez Gomez evaluate what to expect from three notable Americans as the Premier League season begins.
Ian Darke and Julie Foudy recap the United States' strong finish in the Tournament of Nations and hail champions Australia.

Complications from hernia surgery are likely to sideline United States international midfielder Kenny Saief for at least two months, a source from club side KAA Gent confirmed to ESPN FC.

The source corroborated the details of a report from Israeli media outlet One, which indicated that after undergoing the surgery, Saief contracted an infection in his abdomen that required an additional procedure.

The source stated that Saief will now be on antibiotics for two weeks, and will then return to light training in about a month. Once Saief returns to practice, it will take at least a month for Saief to return to full fitness.

The complications are a significant blow to Saief's World Cup aspirations with the U.S. His condition is almost certain to rule him out of the U.S. squad's four remaining World Cup qualifiers -- two in September against Costa Rica and Honduras, and then two more in October against Panama and Trinidad & Tobago.

Kenny Saief switched from Israel to the United States this year.

It's possible that Saief could get back in the national team frame once he recovers, but with no further competitive fixtures prior to the World Cup -- save for a possible playoff in November should the U.S. finish fourth in the final round of World Cup qualifying -- his opportunities to impress manager Bruce Arena will be limited.

A dual national with both Israeli and U.S. citizenship, Saief represented Israel at youth level before filing a one-time switch earlier this year to play for the U.S. team.

Saief was initially part of Arena's Gold Cup roster, and came on as a substitute in the U.S.'s 2-1 friendly win over Ghana in early July. But pain from the groin injury that eventually required surgery forced him to withdraw from the squad.

Jeff Carlisle covers MLS and the U.S. national team for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreyCarlisle.

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