Penrith boss Phil Gould expects Josh Mansour's serious knee injury suffered on Australian representative duty at the Four Nations to affect most of his 2017 NRL season.
The Penrith winger awaits reconstructive surgery after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in a freak mishap while training with the Kangaroos.
Mansour faces a six-month rehabilitation but he may not undergo the surgery in Australia for another two weeks as he remains in England while risk of blood clotting from flying abates and swelling from the injury subsides.
Gould ruled out the club flying the "devastated" NSW Origin representative home on a special chartered flight but indicated time was of the essence.
He said the injury "probably affects most of his next season" even if his rehabilitation goes to plan.
"We're still discussing with the medical team when's the best time for him to fly," Gould told Sky Sports Radio on Friday.
"There's still a lot of swelling in that knee.
"They rang last night to say that ... if he flew straight away, he'd be extremely restricted and he risked blood clotting and other complications.
"What they want to do is rehab him over there for a couple of weeks, get the swelling out of the knee, then get him back on a flight to Australia and get the operation done."
Despite the mishap to the star winger, Gould was philosophical.
"Injuries happen, don't they? They can happen on the field, they can happen at training, they can happen anywhere."
The 26-year-old fell to the ground ter an innocuous-looking collision with Josh Dugan.during the latter stages of Australia's training session on Wednesday in Staffordshire.
Mansour had been expected to win one of the Kangaroos' wing spots for Saturday's Four Nations clash with New Zealand after scoring twice in Australia's 54-12 win over Scotland in their tournament opener.
The setback is a crushing blow for Mansour, who had suffered a long-term medial ligament injury two years ago, and had been planning to go on honeymoon in Europe after the Four Nations following his recent wedding.
"Unfortunately, they'll have to put that on hold," Gould said.
"When we can get him up and around and more mobile, we'll organise for him to get back to Europe and have a holiday."