BIRMINGHAM, Aug 14, 2011 (AFP) - Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has been ruled out for six weeks after suffering a hamstring injury in a 2-1 win at West Bromwich Albion on Sunday.
Ferdinand limped off in the second half of the champions' Premier League opener and United manager Sir Alex Ferguson revealed after the game that the former England captain is expected to be out until October.
It means the 32-year-old will miss United's games against title rivals Arsenal and Chelsea and England's crucial Euro 2012 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Wales.
United captain Nemanja Vidic was also injured on Sunday and the Serbian defender could be out for two weeks after coming off in the second half with a calf problem.
There were further defensive concerns for Ferguson on Sunday as the Scot discovered that right-back Rafael da Silva will be out for 10 weeks after he dislocated a shoulder in training.
"We've had a rough time with injuries," Ferguson told Sky Sports. "Young Rafa has done his shoulder in training in Friday and will be out for 10 weeks, he's probably going to have an operation.
"Rio will be out for six weeks. Vida will have checks tomorrow (Monday), we don't know if it's just a nerve or something, but he could be out for a couple of weeks."