Facial blow endangers Mansour's NRL season

Penrith winger Josh Mansour might miss the rest of the NRL season with facial fractures.
Penrith winger Josh Mansour might miss the rest of the NRL season with facial fractures.

Star Penrith winger Josh Mansour's NRL season might be over after suffering facial fractures in the Panthers' win over Gold Coast.

The 27-year-old will have to undergo complex surgery on his cheek. He left hospital earlier this week after a number of checks.

Penrith are hanging onto slim hope that Mansour might be fit to return within three months, depending on the outcome of the surgery, however it's understood a season on the sidelines is far more likely.

It comes as a massive blow to Mansour, who had missed the start of last year after a serious knee injury.

The Kangaroos' winger is off contract at the end of this year, and had been hoping to earn a potential pay rise at Penrith or elsewhere with another boom season.

Part of that would have included playing a starring role in NSW's State of Origin series. But those hopes are officially dashed.

Mansour's operation is understood to be so complicated that a number of specialists will need to be present as they virtually open his face up to inspect and fix the damage.

The injury is also a significant hit to Penrith, already down on backline stocks.

The winger's injury return last year helped to kickstart a Panthers' revival, after they'd dropped seven of their opening 11 games without him.

Australian Associated Press