Soccer-Leeds striker Rodrigo sidelined for two months

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - La Liga Santander - Real Madrid v Valencia - Alfredo Di Stefano Stadium, Madrid, Spain - June 18, 2020 Valencia's Rodrigo Moreno celebrates scoring a goal that was later disallowed after referral to VAR, as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) REUTERS/Sergio Perez

(Reuters) - Leeds United's top scorer Rodrigo Moreno has been ruled out of action for around two months with an ankle injury, the Premier League side said on Thursday.

A statement from Leeds said the Spanish striker, 31, had suffered bone and ligament damage from a tackle during Saturday's 3-1 win at Accrington Stanley in the FA Cup and underwent minor surgery to treat the problem, adding he was expected to be back playing in late March.

Rodrigo has scored 10 Premier League goals this season, six more than Leeds' second-top scorer Crysencio Summerville, and his injury comes at the start of a testing month for the club, who are 15th in the Premier League standings after 19 games, sitting three places and one point above the relegation zone.

Leeds visit fellow strugglers Nottingham Forest on Saturday and then face rivals Manchester United twice in five days before playing against Everton and Southampton, the bottom two teams in the division.

The good news for Leeds coach Jesse Marsch is that Rodrigo's absence coincides with the return of Patrick Bamford from a long injury lay off and the arrival of French forward Georginio Rutter, who signed last month from Hoffenheim for a club record 36 million pounds ($44 million).

($1 = 0.8163 pounds)

(Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Toby Davis)

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