Zlatan a doubt for Sweden clash with Russia
The Paris Saint-Germain striker has not featured for his club since a clash with Lyon on September 21, missing their last four matches in all competitions.
After a 1-1 draw with Austria in their opening Group G encounter last month, Sweden will be desperate to clinch maximum points from their meeting with Russia at Friends Arena in Solna and then Liechtenstein at the same venue on Sunday.
But they may have to cope without their talismanic captain, as head coach Erik Hamren has conceded that the prognosis was not a good one.
"Zlatan has improved these last few days," he said. "We will decide tomorrow [Thursday] but I will be completely honest, it does not look positive for the game.
"We have a little hope that he will be able to participate.
"Zlatan is difficult to replace. He is unique. But we have shown previously that we can get a good result without Zlatan."