Chris Hughton says Shane Duffy isnâ€™t â€œtoo far awayâ€ from returning from injury.
The Ireland international broke his metatarsal in March, but Hughton feels the Brighton centre back will be available for Irelandâ€™s next World Cup qualifier against Austria on June 11th.
The injury ruled Duffy out of Irelandâ€™s clash with Wales, and Brighton have secured promotion to the Premier League in his absence despite his loss.
“There are two weeks to go in the Championship season and I don’t think Shane will be available for us,â€ Hughton told The Sunday Times.
â€œBut he won’t be too far away, so any opportunities to be involved at international level are probably more likely.”
Duffy has developed into a key player for club and country, and had started Irelandâ€™s previous three World Cup qualifiers before his unfortunately timed injury.
He will get another taste of Premier League football next season with the Seagulls, who are hoping to clinch the Championship title this weekend.
The towering defender joined Brighton for a reported club recordÂ Â£4 million last summer after some impressive performances at Euro 2016.
He’s made 31 appearances for the club, scoring two goals, including the winner against his old club Blackburn.