San Siro hero to undergo operation.
AC Milan striker Antonio Cassano will have “minor” heart surgery that will keep him out for two months.
The 29-year-old underwent tests at the Policlinico facility on Saturday after what was iniatially feared as a brain problem.
The Italy international was reportedly joking with teammates on the plane, following Milan’s 3-2 win over Roma, before suddenly developing problems with his vision, speech and movement.
The Serie A champions said Cassano will undergo the heart procedure sometime in the next few days, and that his recovery time will be better determined after the surgery.
“Cassano has a cardiac anomaly which caused a brain problem due to impaired blood flow,” the club said.
Cassano’s hospitalization came less than a week after team-mate Gennaro Gattuso announced a nerve problem affecting his left eye, which could keep him out for months, or the rest of the season.
Milan has also been without forward Alexandre Pato due to a thigh injury, leaving Ibrahimovic and Robinho as the club’s only two healthy strikers.
Combined with knee surgery for Giuseppe Rossi last week, Cassano’s condition leaves Italy without its two starting forwards as it prepares for the Euro 2012 Championships.
Cassano already missed the 1-1 draw with BATE Borisov on Tuesday that qualified Milan for the next round of the Champions League.
After Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored, midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng celebrated by lifting his jersey to reveal another jersey with Cassano’s name and No. 99 on it.