United boss Keith Millen confirmed after the game on Tuesday night that keeper Lukas Jensen is set to spend a frustrating spell on the sidelines with a wrist injury picked up during training which will now require surgery.
The 22-year-old joined the Blues from the Clarets on a season-long loan deal during the summer window and has made four appearances for the club. His league debut came against Bristol Rovers at the beginning of last month.
“We’re really disappointed about that one,” the manager told us. “He made a save in training and he’s been really unfortunate.
“I don’t know the exact extent, but he’s done some damage to his wrist. He needs surgery on it, so he’ll be out for a while, and I’m not really sure of the timescale.
“It’s really disappointing because he’s a great lad. We’ve kept in touch with Burnley, he’s their player, and hopefully his surgery will go well.
“I spoke to him today, and he’s keen to get back playing.”
With Magnus Norman still on the road to recovery following the leg injury he sustained in the Forest Green game in October, he confirmed that it’s provided opportunity for the younger keepers in the group that they might not otherwise have had.
“In terms of cover, the rules are that I can only bring someone in if Mark [Howard] has a problem,” he explained. “We’ll have to look after him because we’ve been really pleased with him.
“Magnus is probably four weeks away still, but the great thing is that when someone is out it gives others an opportunity, and it’s given me the opportunity to look at two very good young keepers.
“One of them has been on the bench with the first team and that’s a great experience for him. Lukas and his misfortune is the opportunity for these young lads to experience the first team environment.”
The other concern is the more recent dead leg frustration for winger Brennan Dickenson.
“We thought he was going to be ok for Saturday, but it’s just not quite cleared up yet,” he revealed. “There was no need to take a risk with him. I
“I’ll have to see how he is Thursday, but the players who’ve come in for the Morecambe game certainly pushed themselves to the top of the list.
“It was a hard one in some ways because I wanted to keep momentum going, and I don’t normally look forward to the next game, but when we knew we were already through, I’ll be honest, I was thinking ahead to Saturday a bit.
“I was trying to protect some players, so we had to strike a balance. Hopefully we came through with no injuries, even though we had a couple who got cramp.”
“As well as protecting some, there were a few players I wanted to play because I think they’re in a good moment in their game.
“Zach Clough is one of those. He scored on Saturday, and I felt there was no need to rest him, so I wanted to give him half a game to keep him sharp. He looked dangerous, so that was the thinking behind that.
“You have to then weigh up who is struggling a little bit, as with Manny [Mampala] getting cramp, and I thought Brad [Young] worked really hard up there as well.
“We had some good options on the bench, so we were in a good place.”
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