Bristol Academy's Lucy Staniforth out for the season
Bristol Academy's Lucy Staniforth will miss the rest of the Women's Super League season because of injury.
The 20-year-old was stretchered off with a knee problem in the second half of Sunday's FA Cup final against Arsenal, which the Gunners won 3-0.
And scans confirmed the midfielder, in her first season with the Vixens, had suffered cruciate ligament damage.
"Lucy is a warrior and hopefully that means she'll come back stronger," boss Mark Sampson told BBC Radio Bristol.
“"I am so determined to come back fitter than ever."”
Staniforth was one of Bristol's marquee signings during the close season when she moved from Super League rivals Lincoln Ladies in December.
"The important thing for Lucy is to stay positive. It's tough for her as she is such an active girl, but she'll definitely come through it," Sampson added.
"These things are sent to try us and I have no doubt this will make her a tougher character and a better footballer."