WEST Coast star Jeremy McGovern will spend a third night in hospital after sustaining a serious rib injury against Geelong at Optus Stadium on Saturday.
McGovern will undergo surgery at Royal Perth Hospital and have a plate inserted to help his broken ribs repair, with the 30-year-old now facing an uncertain recovery period.
The defender suffered the injury when he collided with Cats forward Jeremy Cameron's legs in the second quarter of Saturday's loss, requiring assistance to leave the ground.
There were initial hopes he would be capable of playing through the injury in the coming weeks, as he has done in the past, but the damage has proved significant.
"All-Australian defender Jeremy McGovern remains in hospital after suffering a significant rib injury against Geelong on Saturday," the Eagles confirmed in a statement on Monday.
"McGovern was taken to hospital after the second quarter incident and is scheduled to have surgery to have a plate inserted later today."
First-year defender Rhett Bazzo made his debut against Geelong and impressed opposed to Cameron in the second-half once McGovern had left the ground.
Tall defender Harry Edwards is also available after being omitted for the clash and shapes as a likely replacement against Essendon on Friday night.
MEDICAL ROOM Check out the full injury list
The Eagles are expected to regain gun midfielder Tim Kelly, who has been their most consistent performer this season, as well as premiership forward Liam Ryan, who has recovered from a hamstring injury.
Both missed against Geelong because of illness.