Western Bulldogs star Adam Treloar will have surgery to repair his ankle syndesmosis ligament injury and miss at least the next six weeks of the AFL season.
The 28-year-old suffered the injury during Saturday night's 111-point thumping of St Kilda, when his leg twisted in a tackle.
"We've decided the best way to manage this injury is to operate to stabilise the ligament," Bulldogs head of sports medicine Chris Bell said.
"This will get him back playing sooner and avoid ongoing complications.
"We will confirm his time frame to return to play following the surgery but expect him to miss the six to eight weeks of footy."
The Bulldogs take on Melbourne in a top-of-the-table blockbuster at Marvel Stadium on Friday night.
Both sides have 9-1 records after the Demons coughed up top spot on the ladder with a shock one-point loss to Adelaide in round 10.
Key ruckman Tim English is expected to return for the Bulldogs after missing four weeks because of concussion.
The 23-year-old was listed as a "test" on the Bulldogs' official injury update on Monday, after coach Luke Beveridge said English will "probably" play against the Demons.
Midfielder Patrick Lipinski (quadriceps) is also a chance to return, while Anthony Scott (head knock) will be tested later in the week.
Third-year Bulldog Laitham Vandermeer will undergo surgery to repair a knee injury that hasn't healed as first hoped.
"Unfortunately we have tried a period of conservative management and Laitham has continued to suffer some catching in his knee from the cartilage damage," Bell said.
"We have been required to resort to surgery to assist in his management.
"We'll confirm his return to play plan following the surgery, in the next couple of days."
Meanwhile, No.1 draft pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan is still listed as a "test" after suffering low-level concussion in the VFL on May 9 and could play in Footscray's clash with the Casey Demons on Sunday.
Australian Associated Press