ADELAIDE defender Fischer McAsey is expected to return to full training in six weeks after being sidelined by a stress fracture in his right leg.
The 20-year-old reported groin tightness and leg pain last week and scans revealed an early stress fracture in his femur.
It is a similar injury to one he suffered as a junior before being drafted with pick No.6 in 2019.
McAsey will spend the next 2-4 weeks doing non-weight bearing training before returning to running and then full training by the end of January.
He is expected to be available for the pre-season competition.
"Thankfully it has been detected early and Fischer is in a good position to allow it to heal and return to training as soon as possible," Adelaide high performance manager Darren Burgess said.
DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY Who has the hardest draw? We break down the 2022 fixture
"He has had a strong pre-season and at this stage we anticipate he will be in a position to play in the pre-season competition."
The 197cm McAsey managed 10 games in his debut season in 2020 but failed to play for the senior side this year.
He is seen as a vital part of the club's future, resisting the lure of returning to his home state of Victoria by signing a two-year contract extension with the Crows until the end of 2023.