SAM Vokes is set to begin the long road to recovery by undergoing surgery today.
The Burnley striker’s season has been cut short by a ruptured anterior cruciate knee ligament.
The Wales international, who has scored 20 league goals to fire the Clarets into second spot, is facing a minimum of six months’ recovery – more likely nine to 12 months following today’s operation.
But team-mate David Edgar says the whole club is right behind him, and has backed him to come back from the horror injury stronger.
“It’s a tough one for Vokesy – a tough one for everyone – but especially for Vokesy because he’s had such a great season,” said the Canadian.
“He didn’t want it to end like this but he’ll come back stronger.
“We know him and he’s got everyone behind him, and with good medical staff here he’ll be all right.
“It’s been a bitter sweet season now, but he’s got a good head on his shoulders and he’ll be okay.”
Burnley have seven games in which to sustain their position in the automatic promotion places, but Vokes is not the only absentee.
Sean Dyche’s side will also begin that run-in without suspended midfielder Dean Marney, while it is likely top scorer Danny Ings will remain sidelined at Watford this weekend with an ankle injury.
Kieran Trippier is closing in on a comeback from a hamstring strain but there are no guarantees about the right back’s availability.
Edgar added: “It is obviously a blow but we’re a team and we have to move on. Whoever steps in is capable of doing a job.
“Touch wood we’ve been lucky with injuries for most of the season so hopefully nothing else sneaks up on us.
“It’s part and parcel of the game though and we just have to move on,” said Edgar, who came off the bench for Vokes and went into midfield as Burnley took up a 4-1-4-1 formation against leaders Leicester, in their first home league defeat for over a year.
“The result was disappointing, but it was good to get back out there and get a decent chunk of playing time under my belt,” he added.
“We want to end the season on a high but we’re taking it one game at a time and that game comes on Saturday.
“Obviously we’ll be without Vokesy now and it will be a tough one because he’s done very well this season but we’ve just got to move on and hope to get the three points on Saturday.”