Jim Mallinder has confirmed Saints prop Alex Corbisiero will be out for ‘three to four months’ after having knee surgery.
Corbisiero sustained the cartilage problem during England training after playing for his country against Argentina earlier this month.
He has since had surgery and is now on the recovery trail, but will not be available until the new year.
Some reports had suggested the 25-year-old could be out for as long as six months, but Mallinder says it won’t be that long.
“He’s had his operation, that’s well documented,” said Mallinder. “He’s on his recovery now and looking to get back in the new year.
“I saw some reports talking about six months, but I don’t know where that’s come from, the surgeon’s not said anywhere near that.
“It will be a few months, probably three to four.”