Football has entered the great unknown with all the professional matches of the main European leagues suspended until at least the beginning of the following month due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Premier League and their counterparts in several countries are on hiatus until the killer virus is under control, with so many questions to answer about how the season should end.
But for those players who were already on the sidelines due to an injury, the break offers a potential opportunity to complete their recovery and rehabilitation without losing any game.
Sportsmail take a look at some of the stars currently out of injury, how close they are to a return, and what could happen next.
Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
The French midfielder was approaching a comeback after losing most of the season with ankle and foot injuries.
Pogba last played for United on Boxing Day, but then requested ankle surgery and has since completed a slow and steady rehabilitation, spending some of his time in Dubai’s warmer climates.
Manchester United’s Paul Pogba last played on Boxing Day and recovered following an ankle surgery, but the French midfielder was closing on return
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hinted last week that Pogba was approaching for a return to training with the expectation that he would return at the beginning of the following month after the international break.
But of course now nobody knows when the Premier League – and the UEFA Europa League for that matter – will resume, so Pogba could find his rehabilitation by continuing without any match action for some time.
Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)
The 19-goal United top scorer aggravated a back injury during the replay of the English Cup third round against Wolves on 15 January and has not played since.
Rashford had been struggling with back problems for some time, but then suffered a double stress fracture that required immediate attention.
Initially, the expectation was that the 22-year-old would lose the rest of the United season and was a potential doubt for the English campaign for Euro 2020.
Marcus Rashford has been knocked out since January with a back problem, but now he may be able to get back in shape without losing any more games.
But Solskjaer suggested last month that Rashford could return before the end of the season, although he admitted that it would be “touch and go”.
United have done quite well in his absence, with Anthony Martial stepping forward and the signatures of January Bruno Fernandes and Odion Ighalo have been impressive, but it now appears that Rashford could be back in shape when football resumes.
And with the expectation that Euro 2020 may be postponed for 12 months, British manager Gareth Southgate doesn’t have to worry about being without one of his main attackers.
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
We haven’t seen Kane since he limped out of Tottenham’s 1-0 defeat in Southampton on New Years Day after breaking a tendon in his thigh.
Amidst a series of disappointing results, Spurs fans were thrilled to see Kane in training last week, with the attacker moving freely in the running drills, as well as passing and shooting the ball.
Kane had set his return date “somewhere between early and mid-April” but now looks set to be delayed.
Harry Kane had a thigh injury during the Tottenham game in Southampton on New Years Day and had just returned to training
However, he guarantees that Kane will likely be able to fully recover without Jose Mourinho being tempted to turn him back and risk further mishap for an injury.
Again, the likely suspension of the Euro means that Southgate will not have to deal with its best striker who will not be fully sharpened.
Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur)
With Spurs attempting to continue their training programs as usual – as opposed to a number of Premier League clubs who have taken precautionary self-isolation – the child is expected to return on Monday.
It comes after the South Korean spent two weeks away from the training camp after returning from Seoul, where he underwent surgery on a fractured forearm.
The son suffered an injury during the Spurs’ 3-2 win at Aston Villa on February 16, a game in which he scored twice, and the team have not won a game since.
Son Heung-min suffered a painful arm injury during Tottenham’s victory over Aston Villa
Even though he’s back in the company of his teammates, Son somehow remains a return to action, even if there has been.
If the season picks up where we left off in a few months, Kane and Son’s return to the gym drastically changes Spurs’ dynamic, who will suddenly imagine their chances of ending the season on a high note.
Alisson Becker (Liverpool)
The goalkeeper n. Liverpool 1 is sidelined due to a hip injury and is unlikely to return to action until after the international break.
Unfortunately, his short absence has already proved detrimental to Liverpool with his interlocutor Adrian who made expensive mistakes when they crashed from the Champions League to Atletico Madrid last week.
At least the suspension of the matches means that Adrian will not cost him more points, even though Liverpool is obviously on the verge of winning his first league in 30 years.
Liverpool’s first-choice goalkeeper, Alisson, has lost several games with a hip injury
Tammy Abraham (Chelsea)
Chelsea best shooter Abraham had struggled with an ankle injury for several games until he was forced to the sidelines for their recent Premier League games against Bournemouth and Everton.
Frank Lampard had said he expected Abraham to return by the end of March, but setting a precise schedule for his recovery was proving difficult.
Now Abraham can take as long as necessary for Chelsea to pursue a place in the Champions League much awaited for the foreseeable future.
Chelsea forward Tammy Abraham has been struggling with an ankle problem for some time
Eden Hazard (Real Madrid)
It seemed that the whole world was as if Eden Hazard, who had fractured his ankle during Real Madrid’s surprise defeat in Levante late last month, had seen the back of the 2019-2020 season.
But with the season likely to continue later in the year, Hazard could still have an impact on Real Madrid’s push for the La Liga title and the Champions League.
There was also the possibility that one of the best players on the continent would have lost Euro 2020 to Belgium, but it seems that we will now be spared this possibility.
Mind you, it may not solve the problem of Hazard struggling for form since he moved to Bernabeu last summer.
Eden Hazard of Real Madrid suffered an ankle fracture during the game against Levante
Luis Suarez (Barcelona)
Suarez was reportedly approaching his return to Barcelona after knee surgery in January to resolve a persistent meniscus problem.
At the time, the Uruguayan faced six months on the sidelines, excluding him for the rest of the campaign.
But reports in the Spanish newspaper AS diary this weekend hinted that Suarez could have returned to the field by April – if only there had been a few games to play.
In a La Liga game against Real Madrid, Barca would definitely welcome Suarez again with open arms if the league were completed later in the summer.
Barcelona striker Luis Suarez is pictured in the gym as he continues rehabilitation from an injury
Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona)
It’s a similar situation at Nou Camp with Dembele, who was ruled out for at least five months in February after tearing his hamstring.
Despite the setback that occurred outside the designated transfer window, permission was granted in Barcelona to sign an emergency striker – Martin Braithwaite.
But it is likely that Braithwaite has not been joining his three appearances for Barcelona for some time and it is possible that Dembele – and Suarez – will be back in shape when the Spanish championship restarts.
Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele was also on the sidelines with a hamstring injury