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Charlie Austin needs shoulder surgery which could keep him out for months

Southampton's Charlie Austin is substituted after sustaining an injury

Claude Puel says that Charlie Austin needs shoulder surgery and will be out for between three and four months. The Southampton striker suffered the injury during last Thursday’s Europa League tie at home to Hapoel Be’er Sheva.

Related: Southampton beat Middlesbrough thanks to Sofiane Boufal’s stunning goal

The confirmation that Austin faces a lengthy lay-off is a bitter blow. The shoulder is the same one that he dislocated three times in 14 months at Burnley. It has been operated on twice previously.

Puel said it was now essential his other forwards stepped up. “It’s difficult to play without Charlie because he scores a lot of goals for us but it’s important to look forward with other players – for example, Jay Rodriguez. He played very well against Middlesbrough, with intensity and quality. He deserved a goal.

“We can also see Shane Long and Nathan Redmond, who played a very good second-half. It’s important that the other players take the place of Charlie. It’s a strong disappointment, of course, for Charlie.”

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by David Hytner at St Mary's, for The Guardian on Sunday 11th December 2016 18.09 Europe/London

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