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MANAGER: A few shoots of recovery

An injury update from Paul Simpson

1 September 2022

Club News

MANAGER: A few shoots of recovery

An injury update from Paul Simpson

1 September 2022

There was cautious optimism from manager Paul Simpson at his midweek press briefing when he talked about the injury situation, even though there are still a number of longer-term absentees to consider.


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“We are certainly getting closer,” he said. “We still have a few little issues heading into this weekend but we’re certainly getting there.

“I was really pleased to get Ryan Edmondson back out on the grass, and to see Owen Moxon and Morgan Feeney out there as well. That’s good for us.

“It was good to see Ben Barclay the other night, he came to the game having spent a couple of weeks with Stockport. He’s been in a boot, it’s been difficult for him when it comes to driving, so we sent him back home.

“He’s getting there, and not only has been injured but he had a bit of an illness as well, so he missed a few of his rehab days. Overall we’re starting to see a few shoots of recovery, and we’ve just got to keep going.”

An unwelcome visitor inside the dressing room over the last week or so was an illness bug, with Jack Ellis the most recently affected on Tuesday night.

“It seems that we’ve got rid of it,” he commented. “Jack’s been in and trained today, so he’s fine. I’m hoping that’s the end of it.

“I’m also asking about what players are doing in preparation for games in terms of the drinks they’re having, the energy shots they take, the food they have.

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“They have these caffeine shots, I don’t know what they take half the time, obviously everything’s legal and has to be passed. You just wonder sometimes if it’s something that has an adverse reaction on players.

“I’m trying to get to the bottom of all of these things. I’m not saying any of that is to blame, but we have to try to ask all of the questions so that we can try to find the answer, so we’ll see.

“It might just be a nervous issue. My best mate Jamie Hoyland used to be sick at half time every single game, and he’s the calmest player you’d ever look at. It might just be something like that and we don’t know.

“It just worries me because I don’t like to hear it or see it. We need to try and get to the bottom of it and get it out of the system if we possibly can. Hopefully everybody will train well on Friday and we’ll be ok.”

With the players who have returned form injury to have pitch time recently, it’s now down to when he feels the time is right to consider them for a place amongst the starters.

“That probably started after full-time on Tuesday night,” he said. “I get a report from Ross the physio as to who has reported anything to him. There was nothing from him on Tuesday, and I always follow that up the next day.

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“We reassess again today with the levels of fatigue they’re at, but I was already starting to think about it on Tuesday night. I had it in mind as to what Saturday’s team would be, if everybody was fit.

“As it is, it’s Thursday now and there are a few little setbacks, so I’ll give it to Friday morning. If they’re not fit to train on Friday then they aren’t fit to start on Saturday.

“I like to name the team on Friday and do our final preparation so they go home and know who is starting. We name the finishers on Saturday so that everybody prepares properly.

“We’ll see how they are, but I know in my mind what the team will be if everybody is fit, and I’ve also got an idea what it will be if certain individuals aren’t right. I already have a picture of it, it's just getting to the point where we can confirm it.”

“Having to wait to do that is just how it goes sometimes,” he added. “It’s something you’d rather not have but it’s just part and parcel of it, it’s part of the job.

“Years ago I probably would have been pulling my hair out and not sleeping on a Thursday and a Friday night, but I do now because I know it’s just one of those things you have to learn not to worry about. You’ve just got to get on with what you’ve got.

“We’ve got a good group, the players involved on Tuesday went out and smashed the running distances and high intensity, so I know they all put a shift in.

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“For the ones who haven’t been regular starters, that will have done them the world of good. It’s a valuable competition for us in terms of how we plan and getting players up to match speed, so we want to stay in it as long as we can.”

Focusing more on Edmondson and Feeney, he commented: “Ryan seems in a good place. I think from what I’m being told it’s something from a previous injury where there’s a little bit of scar tissue remaining from it.

“I don’t really know if you can ever get rid of it but something obviously happened which flared it up. We’ve just got to manage it as well as we can. He played the other night and he’s trained fully since then.

“We’re hoping he’s got through it and we’ve just got to manage it and hope he’s right now. Both him and Morgan are certainly going to be involved at the weekend, I’m quite happy to openly say that, they’ll be involved in some way.

“Paul Huntington also trained today. He took a whack last Saturday but he ran yesterday, trained fully today, so we’re hopeful they’re all going to be fine.

“Tobi’s doing really well, but we’re still looking weeks away, it’s probably going to be the end of September for him. Joel Senior is possibly the start of November to get a game for him, a bounce game of some sort.

“Ben Barclay we’re looking at maybe the beginning of October. Josh Dixon is possibly February and Brennan Dickenson May.

“The recovery is going as we expected for all of them and hopefully they’ll be fully fit and give us that little bit of freshness when they come back into the group.”

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