MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 12: Orazio Fantasia of the Bombers in action during the Essendon Bombers training session at The Hangar on January 12, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Essendon forward Orazio Fantasia will miss the opening weeks of the home-and-away season after undergoing knee surgery on Thursday.

The 22-year-old was experiencing friction in his knee, with the club deciding surgery was the best option to stop the pain.

Essendon’s Physical Performance Manager Justin Crow told the club’s website he believes Fantasia will miss the next month of football.

“Orazio has recently had ITB friction that has been causing him knee pain and had a procedure today to address it,” Crow told

“The intervention went to plan and following these procedures players usually take 3-4 weeks to recover.”

The forward has played 47 games for the Bombers in his four seasons with the club, and booted 39 goals in 20 games for Essendon in 2017.

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