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MANAGER: We're still waiting for news

An injury update on Barclay, Edmondson, Mellish and Patrick

23 December 2022


MANAGER: We're still waiting for news

An injury update on Barclay, Edmondson, Mellish and Patrick

23 December 2022

United boss Paul Simpson confirmed this afternoon that the club is still waiting for news of scan results for striker Ryan Edmondson, who popped his left shoulder during the second half at Northampton on Tuesday night after landing awkwardly right in front of the away fans.

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He’s actually not in today because he’s ill,” he told us. “We had him scanned on Thursday and we’re still waiting for the report to come back. We know that he dislocated his shoulder, it popped out, and the doctor had to put it back in.

“It was clearly a bit tricky to do that because it took him three attempts, so I dread to think the pain that Ryan was going through with that.

“He came back on the coach with us and we’re now all waiting to hear what happens next. I’m not expecting it to be good news, if I’m going to be honest with you, and it’s just really unfortunate for him that this has happened just as he’s starting to get back to his best.

“He’d overcome his ankle problem and the sending off, but it just seems to be one thing after another for him, and this one was such a daft one for him as well.

“I think the ball was out of play when he was challenged, and there was no need for the lad to do it – I’m not saying there was any malice in the challenge from the Northampton guy, it’s just one of those really unfortunate things that Ryan has ended up on the bad end of.

“We’ll see now if he needs surgery or a really detailed rehab programme, and we can take it from there.”

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Always a bubbly character, fingers are crossed that the results do bring something in the way of a chink of light at the end of the tunnel for United’s number 9.

“He is a strong character, but what I will say is that when you’re a professional and you aren’t able to play, it does affect you,” the gaffer commented. “It’s bound to have an impact on your mental health, so we have to help him to manage this latest setback.

“We need to look after him because he’s an important part of our group. He’s done a really good job for us over recent weeks when he’s been available, so it’s just another where we’ll have to get him recovered as quickly as we can.

“Once we know what the plan is from the scan results we’ll be able to put his rehab process in motion and get on with it. Until we hear what the specialists think we’ve just got to wait and see.”

And the outcome of the report from the doctors could well affect some of the activity done in the January window, pending the decision made.

“Without a doubt we have to look at it,” he confirmed. “It’s now opened up a situation where we have to look at that area.

“We’re hopeful that we’ll get Omari Patrick back soon, hopefully if he trains well then perhaps for Crewe or Doncaster, but it’s a hamstring with him so we want to be absolutely certain.

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“At the moment we are certainly a first-choice striker down, so at the least it opens a door for somebody else. We do have people waiting to get in, but if it is going to be one, two or three months for Ryan then it’s a position we would look to try and strengthen.

“I’ll be honest, we do have options in place that we’re looking at. We’ve already been looking at the ‘what if’ scenarios and the striker type problem was one of those types of things that we’ve been planning for ‘just in case’ anyway. It’s just whether or not we can get them over the line.

“To help with that planning I’d like to think we’ll hear his results either today or tomorrow. It’s really difficult, we all know what the issues that are going on in the medical world at the moment, we’re expecting the consultant to have a look at the scan at some point today.

“Whatever gets said, my head is telling me I’m not expecting him to be available for any of the next three games, or probably even January as a minimum. 

“If that’s the case I need confirmation I can keep Jack Stretton, when the point comes for that decision to be made, and I need to get Omari Patrick fit.

“We need to keep Kristian Dennis fit, or maybe get him even fitter. We need as many forward options as we possibly can.

“In this league, you need goalscorers – well, in any league. I need players who are going to be able to fill that striker role to get goals for us.”

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On Omari Patrick, he said: “Omari’s been out on the grass a couple of days, he’s not quite hit the full speed we want him to, so Bradford will be a bit early for him.

“I’m hoping he’ll be able to get a couple of sessions in maybe before Crewe and come back into the reckoning for that one, or maybe for Doncaster. But, as I keep repeating, with it being a hamstring and an injury that keeps reoccurring we need to make sure that he’s right and not take too many risks with it. 

“Ben Barclay is a little behind Omari, but we are hopeful of having him fit again over the next few weeks. It was more a case of getting the swelling out of the joint with him, and that’s gone well, so we’re loading him up in the gym with strength work and plyometrics, and that type of stuff that we need him to do.

“We haven’t had him back on the grass yet, and I can’t give a date of when that will be, but I’d like to think it’ll be at some point over the next few weeks.”

“Jon Mellish’s knee has settled,” he added. “He’s been doing all the work asked of him. He’ll be able to join training with the group tomorrow [Saturday], but it’s still a little bit early to say whether or not he’ll be available for Bradford.

“We’re doing everything we can to give him every chance, but we’ve got to take a longer term view and make sure he’s right whenever we do use him.

“I’ll leave that decision as late as possible. We want him to be available so we’ll give him the time. He needs to join in the training with us and if he does, and he’s feeling ok, and doesn’t get any reaction after each of the sessions he does, he’ll certainly come into our thinking for Boxing Day.”

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