New Bournemouth recruit Dominic Solanke could be sidelined until February with a hamstring injury.
The Cherries signed England striker Solanke from Liverpool for £19million on Friday, but did so fully aware he would be out of action until next month.
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe insisted there was no risk in drafting in the 21-year-old despite him carrying an existing injury issue.
“Dominic will miss most of January I would say, because he’s got a bit of a hamstring issue,” said Howe, after Bournemouth lost 3-1 to Brighton in the FA Cup third round at Dean Court.
“It will be more February before we’re likely to see him in action, but we knew about that because he’s been through all the medicals and checks.
“He adds a slightly different dynamic to our front line: he can hold the ball up in play, he’s technically gifted, has a good physical presence and all-round he’s a very good player.”
Anthony Knockaert, Yves Bissoume and Florin Andone all found the net for Brighton at Dean Court, guiding the Seagulls into the FA Cup’s fourth round for the ninth time in 10 seasons.
Marc Pugh tucked away a neat strike for Bournemouth, but that proved scant consolation as the Cherries slumped out of this year’s cup.
Bournemouth boss Howe vowed his side will get back to work on sharpening up defensively, having leaked 15 goals in four games.
“These games always swing on small moments, and the chance that came our way that we missed just before the goal was key,” said Howe.
“We haven’t maximised our chances, and we’ve been easy to score against recently, and that must change.
“We’ll go away on the training ground and try to put that right now.”
Brighton boss Hughton hailed one-cap forward Solanke as a fine signing for Bournemouth, while also insisting the Seagulls were never interested in signing the ex-Liverpool man.
“He was a player that was linked with us, but that was all,” said Hughton
“I can’t say I don’t know the player, because this is our game, he’s an exceptional young good talent.
“Any player of that age and quality we’re aware of. But it was just speculation, nothing more.
“Having said that, Bournemouth have got a real exceptional talent, and I’m sure he’ll be great for them.
“I’m really delighted to go through; we’ve got a tough period coming up but I would rather be in the next round than not.
“We didn’t start the game too well, we had some problems early on and we probably were 2-0 up against the run of play.
“But we managed the game well in the second half and it’s a great result for us.”
Stay updated with the latest news, gossip and football stories by following us @Football_P