BUENOS AIRES, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Argentina and Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Exequiel Palacios faces a lengthy layoff after suffering a fractured bone in his back during the Albiceleste's 1-1 draw with Paraguay on Thursday.
Palacios was left writhing in pain after Angel Romero's knee crashed into the 22-year-old during an aerial duel in the first half of the World Cup qualifier at La Bombonera.
The game was halted for several minutes as the former River Plate player was carried off on a stretcher and taken to hospital.
"[Palacios] suffered direct trauma to the left ... lumbar area, verifying a fracture of the transverse processes of the lumbar spine," the Argentine Football Association said in a statement on its official website.
It added that Palacios would remain in hospital to allow doctors to monitor his progress.
"We've lost a player for several days or months," Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni said after the match. "I don't know if there was bad intention or not, but there was a blow and VAR didn't intervene. I send Exequiel a big hug. I hope he recovers soon. The group is concerned [for him]." Enditem