Lucas Joao has suffered a serious injury and may not return until new year, boss Veljko Paunovic has confirmed.

The Portuguese striker limped off in the second half of Reading's home win against Preston North End.

He was subsequently missing from the squad that lost 3-2 to Bristol City on Tuesday evening.

Speaking after the defeat, Paunovic have an update into Joao's fitness

"It looks like a long-term injury," said Paunovic. 

"We might have to wait until January to recover him, so it's a big blow. 

"He ripped the joint of his hip so it's possible he will need surgery.

"Specialists are discussing him having surgery in the next couple of days."