Lisandro Martinez injury update as potential Man Utd return date set

The defender was forced off and in clear distress during Manchester United's 3-0 win at home to West Ham.
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Fears of a serious injury to Lisandro Martinez look to have been allayed with reports suggesting the Manchester United defender will not require surgery.

Martinez was forced off in the second-half of United's 3-0 win at home to West Ham on Sunday, following a collision with Hammers defender Vladimir Coufal. The 26-year-old was visibly distressed and had to be consoled by teammates while on-pitch assessments took place.

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Having come back on for a few minutes, Martinez then went down again and limped off, to be replaced by Raphael Varane. Manager Erik ten Hag described the setback as a 'personal disaster' for the Argentinian, who had only just returned from a near four-month absence after suffering a recurrence of a foot issue picked up last season.

Ten Hag insisted that he needed to await the results of further assessment before speculating on a length of absence but Argentinian journalist Gaston Edul reported on Monday afternoon that surgery is not needed. There were obvious fears that the defender had injured his anterior cruciate ligament but Edul adds that the issue is with a collateral ligament, of which there are two running either side of the knee.

"Lisandro Martínez has a sprained collateral ligament," Edul wrote on X, formerly Twitter. "The worst scenario was ruled out. It is between a month and a half and two months of recovery. You don't have to have surgery. Good news."

A two-month absence would see Martinez ruled out until early April, meaning he could miss up to seven games before a potential return at Chelsea on April 3. United will likely be very cautious with the centre-back's return, given his regular fitness issues throughout the past 12 months.

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Martinez has only made 10 appearances for United this season, due to the complication of that foot issue late last year. The former Ajax man missed the final portion of last season after breaking a metatarsal in the Europa League draw against Sevilla in April.