Everton boss Sam Allardyce has denied his own club’s claims that Gylfi Sigurdsson will miss up to eight weeks of action.
The Toffees released a statement on Wednesday to confirm the Iceland international could miss the next six to eight weeks after suffering an injury.
The news came as a blow to the club’s fans as Allardyce tries to finish in the top seven this season.
Everton are just six points behind seventh-placed Burnley while the statement will have also worried the Icelandic national team.
Despite the claims, Allardyce insists the former Swansea man could still return before the end of the campaign.
“Whoever gave that statement out is going to get a right telling off because you cannot predict a length of injury in its entirety,” said the Everton boss.
“You have people who heal quicker. We’ve got a highly qualified medical staff and equipment to try and speed up any injury. I’ve always felt it’s the wrong thing to do, to tag an injury for its time limits because people recover quicker than others.
“For me, it’s how the injury is in the next two weeks. When you sustain a knee injury, there’s a settling down period immediately afterwards and then it’s how quickly the player recovers.
“Gylfi’s motivation is to get back playing for us and for Iceland at the World Cup.”
Sigurdsson’s absence could now give 32-year-old Wayne Rooney the chance to shine in the No.10 role.
The former England captain was played as a holding midfielder against Brighton last weekend, but Allardyce has refused to give away his tactics.
“Who knows [where Rooney will play]?” said Allardyce. “He’s played the No.10 role in a 4-3-3 before the role he played for the first time on Saturday, where he took over from Gana [Idrissa Gueye] and produced a top-quality performance.”