Michael Zullo suffers ACL agony
The 25-year-old left-sided utility, who has amassed 10 Socceroos caps, went down clutching his left knee at training on Wednesday.
Zullo underwent scans on Thursday, with the club confirming the bad news on their website later in the day.
The news is a major blow for Zullo who is in the final year of his contract at Utrecht, having returned to the club this pre-season after spending last term on loan at Adelaide United.
Zullo has been plagued by crippling groin and pelvic problems during his time at Utrecht and his latest injury will compound his frustration at a critical time in his career.
"I immediately felt that something was wrong," Zullo told Sport Promotion.
Utrecht’s immediate estimation for Zullo’s rehabilitation and return is nine months, but the fringe Socceroo said he hoped to be back sooner.
"I hope I’m not out longer than half a year,” Zullo added.
Speaking to FourFourTwo last month, Zullo admitted the 2014-15 season was make-or-break for him.
“I’ve got one year left on my deal and this season could change a lot,” he said.
“I’ve got a lot of unfinished business, because it didn’t really work out the first time at Utrecht.
“It was a mixture of everything, with injuries, a bit of bad luck and it being really competitive in my position.”