Russell Canouse, a starting defensive midfielder for D.C. United, will miss three to six weeks after suffering a collapsed lung during the 0-0 draw against the Chicago Fire on Saturday.

Canouse, 24, was hospitalized for two days in the Chicago area. The injury occurred in a second-half collision with C.J. Sapong. He initially remained in the game but departed in the 64th minute.

In the locker room afterward, Canouse said in a brief interview that he was having trouble breathing. He was examined by the team’s medical staff before being transported to Rush University Medical Center.

The timetable would sideline Canouse for at least four of United’s 10 remaining matches, starting Sunday against first-place Philadelphia at Audi Field. D.C. (9-6-9, 36 points) is third in MLS’s Eastern Conference, three points behind the Union but also three points above the playoff threshold.

Canouse has started 20 of 24 matches and appeared in one as a substitute. He and Junior Moreno form Coach Ben Olsen’s top tandem in defensive midfield. With Canouse sidelined, Chris Durkin (six starts, 12 appearances) would partner with Moreno. Another possibility is a formation change that includes one defensive midfielder and an extra attacker.

Canouse’s absence could increase the possibility of United signing former U.S. national team player Jose Torres, a free agent central midfielder who has been training with the club.

United is also shopping in the domestic and international marketplace ahead of the Aug. 7 transfer and trade deadline.

Meantime, the club parted ways with defender-midfielder Chris McCann, who, in his first year in Washington, made six appearances (four starts) and logged 319 minutes. McCann, 32, came to United from Atlanta. Previously, the Irishman played for Wigan and Burnley in England.

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