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Manchester United: Robin van Persie Injury News Worse Than Expected

Robin van Persie Manchester United

BBC Sport / Twitter / @BBCSport

Manchester United was dealt a big blow on Friday as scans revealed that the injury sustained by Robin van Persie towards the end of their mid-week Champions League clash with Olympiakos was worse than initially expected. The Dutch international was diagnosed with a knee sprain that could keep him out of the lineup for at least a month.

This news comes on the heels of Manchester United being drawn on Friday to face holders Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals. The odds of Van Persie being fit for these crucial matches are very slim as the first leg is only 11 days away with the return leg eight days later. At this point all of the steam in the sails of the Manchester United faithful is all but lost now that the chances of winning some silverware have taken a dramatic hit.

The more lasting impact could be felt in the race for the final European places based on the table position in the English Premier League. The Sixth-place position comes with a Europa League spot due to Manchester City‘s win in the Capital One Cup. Manchester United is currently sitting in seventh place just three points behind Everton with the Toffees having played one fewer match than United.

This battle will come to a head as the two clubs square off on April 20 at Goodison Park with the winner likely to claim the final spot in Europe for next season. Manchester United has participated in a European competition every season since the 1989-1990 campaign.

The question for David Moyes becomes now who will fill the void left by van Persie at the front of the United attack? When Robin van Persie was out during the holidays and into January, it was Danny Welbeck who filled in with six goals in seven matches. United though does have Mexican international Javier Hernandez who has not played for United since Feb. 9 and has not started a match in the Premier League since Dec. 28; Hernandez has been recovering from a knee injury of his own suffered on international duty in early March.

We will find out how Moyes handles the situation when Manchester United travels to Upton Park to face off with West Ham United on Saturday morning. The match can be seen in the United States on the NBC Sports Network starting at 1:00 p.m. EDT.

Matthew Evans is an MLS writer for Stoppage Time Soccer with a primary emphasis on all things Cascadia. “Like” him on Facebook, Follow him on Twitter, or add him to your network on Google

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