Sheridan facing four months out after shoulder surgery

ENGLAND manager Martin Johnson&rsquo;s autumn plans have been plunged into chaos once again after prop Andrew Sheridan was ruled out for four months.<br /><br />The British and Irish Lions loosehead will undergo reconstructive surgery tomorrow, meaning he will miss the November internationals and the start of next year&rsquo;s Six Nations. <br /><br />Sheridan, who has played in 21 of England&rsquo;s last 28 Tests, suffered the injury when a scrum collapsed during Sale&rsquo;s Heineken Cup win over Cardiff Blues on Friday. The 29-year-old&rsquo;s absence means Johnson will be without a host of key players for the upcoming fixtures against Australia, Argentina and New Zealand. <br /><br />Bath forward Lee Mears was also ruled out yesterday, while Leicester back Toby Flood too has a knee injury. Wasps lock Simon Shaw is suffering from a toe problem, while shoulder complaints have also ruled out London Irish full-back Delon Armitage and Brive centre Riki Flutey.<br /><br />&ldquo;It&rsquo;s bad news for Andrew, England and Sale and we just have to come to terms with it,&rdquo; said Sale director of rugby Kingsley Jones. &ldquo;Andrew is a great presence around our team and he will be missed.&rdquo;<br /><br />Should Sheridan take the full four months to recover he will miss England&rsquo;s Six Nations opener against Wales on 6 February and the trip to Italy eight days later. <br /><br />&nbsp;A lack of match practice would also make him a major doubt for the visit of Grand Slam winners Ireland on 27 February.<br /><br />Sheridan was given oxygen on the pitch as doctors put his shoulder back in place late in last week&rsquo;s match.<br /><br />Mears, meanwhile, is facing a six-to-eight week absence after injuring his knee in a Heineken Cup defeat to Ulster earlier this month. <br /><br />&nbsp;The 30-year-old, who has 34 caps, was taken off after damaging medial ligaments in his left knee.<br />