England's David Beckham is set to miss this year's World Cup in South Africa after his surgeon gave his prognosis over a torn Achilles tendon.
He is due to arrive in Finland on later Monday for surgery.
"To start kicking and playing football (will take) about three months. For maximal performances and maximum kicks and jumps, maybe it takes one month more, 3-4 months before one is able to do light playing," Dr. Sakari Orava said Monday.
"It's a total tear of the Achilles tendon. If there is any weakness then, a graft can be taken from the calf and put over the injury site to make it stronger. This kind of procedure is planned."
The World Cup begins in less than three months on June 11.
Beckham, England's most capped outfield player with 115 appearances, had been bidding to play in a fourth World Cup.
He was getting ready to kick a ball unchallenged late in Sunday's Serie A match when he suddenly pulled up and shouted to the Milan bench "It's broken".
"Today we allow patients to do motion earlier than before. In this case we try to get motion back as soon as possible. The operation takes less than one hour," Orava added.
"(After the) the first month, there can gradually be more and more motion and muscle contractions, and very gradually (shifting) from light training to harder training in the second month.
"After that, one is usually able to walk and maybe start running lightly after two months if everything goes fine. All this depends on the type of tear," he added.
Beckham, on loan at Milan from Los Angeles Galaxy, will miss the Serie A run-in with his side a point behind leaders Inter Milan with 10 games left.