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Anna Harrington

Victory's Zimmerman suffers broken leg

Melbourne Victory's Catherine Zimmerman (l) has a broken leg and faces time away from the game. (Rob Prezioso/AAP PHOTOS) (AAP)

Melbourne Victory's tough start to their A-League Women title defence has gone from bad to worse with star striker Catherine Zimmerman requiring surgery on a broken leg.

Zimmerman suffered a fractured fibula in a challenge in the 20th minute of Saturday's 2-0 loss to Sydney FC and was taken off four minutes later.

The 28-year-old had surgery on Tuesday, with Victory saying the striker would be out for an "extended period".

Victory wouldn't put a timeline on Zimmerman's return to action but expected her to be back before season's end.

Zimmerman's injury comes at a horror time for Victory, who lost their opening two games and desperately need to kickstart their season against Wellington at City Vista Recreation Reserve on Saturday.

The American scored seven goals last season, including netting in the grand-final win over Sydney, and six in 2021-22, playing a crucial role in Jeff Hopkins' attack.

"Zim is definitely a significant loss for us, and we wish her the best in her recovery," Hopkins said in a statement.

"We're confident she can bounce back and play a big role in the team a little later in the season.

"We have a squad that has a 'next player up' mentality and we're looking forward to bouncing back this weekend against Wellington."

Victory are able to sign an injury replacement player for Zimmerman, who is one of their internationals this season.

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