Key Sunderland duo out for season
Sunderland duo Steven Fletcher and Lee Cattermole have been ruled out for the rest of the season, the Premier League club have confirmed.
Cattermole has had an operation on his knee, while Scotland international Fletcher picked up an ankle ligament injury on international duty. It is not known if Fletcher's ankle problem will require surgery.
A statement on the club's official website read: "Sunderland have confirmed today that striker Steven Fletcher and captain Lee Cattermole will miss the rest of the current campaign due to injury.
"Cattermole underwent an operation on his knee earlier today and Fletcher sustained ankle ligament damage whilst on international duty with Scotland.
"It is not known at this stage if Fletcher will require an operation, with the injury requiring further assessment in the coming weeks.
"Both players will play no further part in the Black Cats 2012-13 Barclays Premier League season."
Sunderland sit 15th in the Premier League, just four points clear of the relegation zone and without a win in seven games.
Next up for Martin O'Neill's side is a home game against Manchester United, followed by a trip to face Chelsea.