Republic of Ireland defender Greg Cunningham is facing another lengthy spell on the sidelines after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament.

It's the latest in a series of desperately unlucky setbacks for the Galway man, who shared his anguish on Twitter after receiving the result of a scan on Thursday afternoon.

"Gutted to say I've received the results of my scan from the knee injury I sustained at the weekend and unfortunately I’ll be out for a number of months with a torn ACL," the 28-year-old said. 

"After taking a few days to process this, I’m now looking forward to the first stages of my recovery!!"

Cunningham - on loan at Blackburn Rovers from Cardiff City - was called into Mick McCarthy's senior squad ten days ago as defensive cover ahead of the huge Euro 2020 qualifiers in Georgia and Switzerland.

With Enda Stevens suspended for Saturday's clash in Tbilisi, Cunningham was excepted to jostle with Matt Doherty for the left-back position.

"Enda Stevens is suspended for the game in Tbilisi against Georgia and Greg is one of the most experienced left-backs available to us," McCarthy said at the time.

"He was with us in the summer and he knows what we want."

The defender limped out of Rovers' 4-2 loss at QPR last Saturday in the 17th minute. He returned to Cardiff for a scan which confirmed the extent of the damage. He moved to Ewood Park on a season-long loan in the summer and had been in good form, playing ten times for the Championship outfit. 

Cunningham has been in and around Ireland squads since 2010, when Giovanni Trapattoni gave his debut in a friendly against Algeria. However he's been plagued by injuries that have stunted his international progress and has just four caps to his name.

In March 2018, he had to pull out of Martin O'Neill's squad for the friendly in Turkey with a hamstring problem. He fractured his leg in April 2017, and then suffered a bad hamstring injury soon after making his comeback.