LONDON: Aston Villa striker Darren Bent has been all but ruled out of Euro 2012 after learning that he will be sidelined for up to three months with ruptured ankle ligaments.

He  is unlikely to be available until the end of May, just a week before the finals start in Poland and the Ukraine. With Wayne Rooney suspended for the opening two games – after being sent off in Montenegro – Bent had been likely  to play a key role for England in the group stage.

He had been  overlooked, unluckily, for for the 2006 and 2010 World Cup squads and will now be missing again after being injured in Villa’s goalless draw at Wigan in the Premier League on Saturday.

Villa said in a statement: “Darren Bent has undergone scans and he has seen a top ankle specialist this afternoon in London. He faces up to 12 weeks on the sidelines having ruptured ankle ligaments in his left foot in the game against Wigan and he is unlikely to play again this season.

“Dr Ian McGuinness and the Villa medical staff have been liaising with the England medical team about the extent of his injury. Darren will undergo a further examination in seven days to determine the need for an operation.”