Brazilian striker Jo faces an uncertain future at Everton after the on-loan striker was suspended for a breach of discipline.
The Manchester City forward, who has been struggling with a knee injury, returned home to Brazil without prior permission over the festive period, leading to the Toffees' suspension.
Manager David Moyes did not say when the ban would end, but it may have scuppered the former CSKA Moscow player's hopes of securing a permanent stay at Goodison Park.
Asked if the punishment was a short-term measure, Moyes said: "At the moment. It might change in the future, but at the moment it is.
"Jo went back to Brazil without permission from the football club. He is now back but is suspended at the present time.
"I am disappointed. We like Jo, he has been a really good lad and we have enjoyed having him.
"But there has to be discipline at all football clubs. He left over a busy period when we were short of players. I found it very difficult so he is suspended from the club."
Jo last featured for Everton in the 3-3 draw against Chelsea three weeks ago after signing a season-long deal with the club in July.
He has managed just two goals this season and has yet to net in the Premier League.
Moyes, meanwhile, is prepared to welcome back his former assistant Alan Irvine on a temporary basis until he finds another job.
Irvine finds himself out of work after being suddenly dismissed by Championship side Preston North End. Moyes was stunned by the news and reacted by telling his fellow Scot he could do some coaching at Finch Farm in the interim.
"I was with Alan and I have said to him he is welcome to come in. He is a student of the game and won't sit at home," said Moyes, who also learned his trade at the Lancashire side.
"It was a shock to me as I think it was to everyone in football. They have a tight budget but every club is the same."