The English international will miss the Six Nations as well as the Lions’ tour of New Zealand.
Leicester Tigers have this morning confirmed the news that centre Manu Tuilagi will be out of action for around 9 months after damaging knee ligaments during Leicester’s Premiership loss to Saracens last weekend.
The news comes at the worst possible time for the 25-year-old, with Tuilagi expected to be called up for England’s Six Nations campaign, as well as the upcoming British and Irish Lions tour this summer.
The Samoan native has lined out for England 26 times in the past, but has managed just one appearance under current boss Eddie Jones due to past injury troubles.
The blow will perhaps be felt heaviest of all by current club Leicester Tigers, with Aaron Mauger’s side desperate to improve on their disappointing season thus far.
Extended spells on the sidelines have become all too familiar for Tuilagi, with the Samoan powerhouse having been out of action for 15 months between 2014 and 2016.
The 25-year-old also missed two months of the current campaign with a long-term groin injury.