Villarreal's Roberto Soldado out for six months with knee injury

Villarreal striker Roberto Soldado has suffered a cruciate ligament tear in his right knee, leaving him sidelined for at least six months and his club now short of attacking cover ahead of their Champions League playoff games with Monaco.

Soldado, 31, suffered the injury during Tuesday evening's Trofeo Herrera meeting with Deportivo La Coruna at Riazor and leaves summer signing Alexandre Pato as the only fit central attacker at the club.

A Villarreal club statement on Wednesday morning read: "Tests carried out this morning on the player Roberto Soldado have confirmed that the Villarreal forward has suffered a tear to his anterior cruciate ligament and external meniscus on his right knee.

"The player will undergo a surgical intervention in the coming days. Soldado was injured in yesterday's friendly against Deportivo de la Coruna at Riazor, a few minutes after taking to the pitch following the half-time break, and had to be replaced by his teammate Mario Gonzalez. Be strong, Rober!"

After arriving at Villarreal last summer, former Valencia and Tottenham forward Soldado formed an impressive partnership with fellow forward Cedric Bakambu, who is currently out with a foot injury and also reportedly set to miss both legs of the playoff.

Villarreal face Monaco at El Madrigal on Wednesday Aug. 17 and play the away leg on Tuesday Aug. 23.