Liverpool striker Fernando Torres will be sidelined for the next 6 weeks, meaning he will miss the end of the season for the Reds.
Torres has been struggling with a knee injury recently and a specialist in Spain this weekend told him he needed surgery on the problem on Sunday evening.
A spokesman for the club said, “It was decided that he would need surgery on a torn cartilage in his right knee.
“This will be carried out later on Sunday and, as a guide, the usual rehabilitation period for this type of procedure is around six weeks.”
Torres will miss the chance to face his former club, Atletico, once again, but should be back in action in time for the World Cup with Spain.
Benitez now looks likely to call upon Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel as more attacking players, whilst 21-year-old David N’gog and 19-year-old Dani Pacheco are the club’s only fit recognised strikers.