When Carles Puyol hit the ground late in Barcelona's win over Benfica today, most of us feared a broken arm or worse. It was an ugly fall and an even uglier landing. There's video out there, but I don't recommend searching it out, especially if you've recently eaten.
Fortunately, reports are coming out of Spain that the Barca defender escaped with a dislocated elbow. Still bad, but depending on the extent of the damage, he could be back early next year, or sooner. A report in Sport says that if Puyol has avoided ligament damage in the elbow, he could be back in November. If there is ligament damage however, he's likely facing surgery and will be out until late December/early January.
According to Sport, doctors in Portugal examined Puyol after the match and released him to travel back to Barcelona with team after reducing the dislocation under anesthesia and immobilizing the injured arm. Puyol will face further test and exams upon return home to figure out the extent of the damage.
Unless something far worse is discovered, it looks like Puyol has dodged an extended stay on the sidelines. It should be noted though that the team has yet to make an official announcement concerning the injury, so things could change in the next couple days.