SYDNEY recruit Daniel Menzel underwent groin surgery last week and faces a race against the clock to be fit for the start of the season.
The talismanic forward felt soreness in his groins on joining the club as a delisted free agent in late November.
The Swans decided to act now to prevent a situation where the discomfort would continue to linger into the start of the season.
Sydney is hopeful the 27-year-old will resume training in February, not leaving him with much time to get his preparations in order for round one.
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Swans football manager Charlie Gardiner told AFL.com.au, "It's been well documented that Dan had some issues with his groin this year, so we wanted to get on top of it now rather than it potentially become an issue during next season.
"The medical team identified an opportunity to potentially improve Dan's output and his durability longer term. The surgery was performed last week, which went well.
We know Dan is a real professional who will do everything required in his rehab and we're confident he'll make a successful return to training in February.
The luckless forward managed 13 games in his final season in Cats colours last season, with a groin complaint limiting his ability to get on the field.
Menzel had booted 15 goals in five games to start the 2018 season, but began feeling sore in the groins so the Cats decided to intervene and give him two cortisone injections to release the pain.
The injections backfired dramatically, keeping Menzel on the sidelines until round 17 after he was unable able to walk for a week or train for a month.
The surgery is a big blow for the Swans, given they had hoped Menzel and spearhead Lance Franklin would be able to develop a strong rapport in 2019.
Franklin also had groin surgery in November and will not be back in full training until January.
The superstar forward injured his groin in the dying minutes of the Swans' round 22 clash with Greater Western Sydney, before sitting out a week and playing in the club's elimination finals loss to the Giants.
A period of rest was prescribed over the off-season, but the Swans decided to bite the bullet and get the surgery done after the injury did not heal as well as hoped.