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Schalke hit by Afellay and Moritz injuries

Monday 7 January 2013 18.15 CET
Ibrahim Afellay has picked up a fresh injury after recovering from a hamstring problem

FC Schalke 04's 2013 has not got off to an ideal start with the news of an injury setback for Ibrahim Afellay, and a fresh problem for Christoph Moritz.

A hamstring injury has prevented Afellay, who is on loan from FC Barcelona, from appearing for the Königsblauen since the 10 November defeat of SV Werder Bremen, the club's last win in domestic football. Despite recently recovering from that knock, Schalke have announced the winger is suffering with a new problem.

He has sustained a tear at the junction of muscle and tendon in his right thigh and will be sidelined for at least two months. That would rule the 26-year-old Dutch international out of the first leg of Schalke's UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie with Galatasaray AŞ on 20 February, and doubtful for the return on 12 March.

Germany Under-21 midfielder Moritz, meanwhile, sustained a medial collateral ligament tear in his right knee during the 3-2 friendly win against Al-Sadd on Sunday and is expected to be out for roughly five weeks. The injuries comes as a blow to new coach Jens Keller, who took over from Huub Stevens on 16 December in the midst of the club's seven-game run without a win, with which they ended 2012.

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