Sunderland never have any luck, do they?
News broke yesterday afternoon that Swedish U21 starlet Joel Asoro will miss this Friday's crunch Championship fixture against Gary Rowett's Derby County after suffering a suspected concussion, an injury sustained whilst on international duty with the Blågult.
In the Swedish media, U21 physician Fredrik Bergstrom explained:
Joel has incurred a brain injury in connection with an aerial duel at the start of the second half. Replaced directly. He is, under the circumstances, ok.
He has a concussion. Return can not be forecast until the brain scan is started. It is at least 24 hours between the results of the scan. Earliest return six days after concussion. This is being evaluated continuously.
The 18-year-old forward's fine run of recent form continued during the international break, with the youngster scoring twice for Sweden's youth team in a 3-0 win over Turkey in the U21 European Championships qualifiers.
The Stockholm-born Sunderland academy graduate started in his now-familiar wide right position and netted twice, displaying some tricky wing play before stabbing the ball beyond Bursaspor goalkeeper Muhammed Şengezer for his side's opening goal.
Adding to a fine record in the underage ranks, Asoro's record now stands at combined 17 goals in 32 appearances all told for the Swedish U17 and U21 teams.
The Swede hasn't been as prolific for Sunderland, with just the two goals in 21 Championship appearances this season, but with his concussion Chris Coleman's side lose pace, attacking endeavour and general trickery.
In truth, Asoro has been one of the only bright sparks in what is likely to be the worst season statistically Sunderland's proud 139 year history.
However, could an unfortunate situation for the Swede be a blessing in disguise for former Newcastle man Kazenga LuaLua? The 27-year-old now has a massive opportunity to prove his worth on Wearside.
The Zaire-born winger spent the early part of the season on loan at Queens Park Rangers before singing for Sunderland in January following his release by Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion.
LuaLua has failed to start a single game for Coleman since arriving on Wearside, and instead the former Wales manager has opted to deploy him as a substitute - but even then, the attacker's off-the-bench appearances have been limited to just four due to a string of niggling injuries.
Kazenga - the brother of ex-Portsmouth striker Lomana LuaLua - left the South Coast with Brighton's blessing and some pretty promising reviews, with his fast, energetic, tricky, style play a joy to watch when in full flow - if not a little maddening at times.
The former Doncaster loanee also possesses athleticism, pace, willingness, and has regularly contributed goals and assists during his career. With Asoro's out for at least two games, now is the time for LuaLua to take Sunderland by storm and prove his worth.