SOUTHEND United striker Tom Hopper has undergone another operation as he bids to regain full fitness.

Hopper has been out since last October after suffering a cruciate ligament injury against Walsall.

But Blues boss Kevin Bond does not expect Hopper to be back any time soon.

“Tom Hopper has been in for a cartilage operation which will extend his rehabilitation period for a period so he’s long-term,” said Bond.

“He won’t be back in the foreseeable future.”

Hopper joined Blues last summer and scored seven goals in 14 appearances before being forced onto the sidelines.