It was bad news for popular midfielder Jamie Devitt when it was confirmed that his hamstring injury will need surgery and lengthy spell of rehab.
The 32-year-old felt a pull towards the end of the Salford game and was seen by a specialist this week, with a way forward now mapped out.
“Dev’s is a really bad one,” gaffer Paul Simpson told us. “I think it’s a 3C hamstring tear, so we’re looking at 16 weeks for him. He’s under the knife for surgery on Tuesday down in London, so that’s him done for the season.
“He’s as low as a snake’s belly, that’s the truth of it. He’s had a horrendous time, not just this season but for the past couple of seasons.
“His body just keeps breaking down on him and this is the same hamstring he had surgery on last time. I think it’s in a different area, but it’s still surgery.
“He’s obviously really upset, it’s horrendous for him and his family. We’ll look after him regardless, we’ll give him the right sort of care and attention.
“He’ll be looked after by a top surgeon and get the treatment that he needs. Then he has a decision to make about what he wants to do moving forward.”
“His contract situation doesn’t come into it right now,” he added. “The way football contracts go means his will go until the end of June, then until the end of July if he doesn’t get a club.
“He’ll be looked after properly, we’ll make sure of that. He’ll get the surgery then we’ll do his rehab properly with him, then he’ll have to decide what he wants to do.
“We’ll continue to speak to him and see him, he’s been back in today for the first time since the weekend and he’s a little bit better than he was when I spoke to him on Monday or Tuesday.
“I think the reality of it has now hit him and he knows what he’s got in store, luckily he’s a strong character and a big personality, and we’ve got people here who will look after him.”
On the players working their way back from fitness, he commented: “Probably the only one who has joined in full training is Bren Dickenson, and we’re talking about three days this week for him.
“But he’s been out for nearly 10 months, or whatever it’s been, so it would be a rash or rushed decision to have to use him. It’s one of those where I can’t just be selfish because I might be short on numbers. We’ll see between now and Monday exactly what we can and can’t do with him.
“Tobi Sho-Silva has literally just done his first full session with us today, so that’s him back on full contact, but he’s probably still a week or two away from doing any intensive work.
“Morgan Feeney, Fin Back, if everything goes swimmingly in terms of their rehab, and swimmingly for us in terms of our results, they would be available if we had a game on 28 May.
“Jack Ellis probably won’t be available this season, he’s looking at the middle of June. I know I’ve got enough to go to Sutton, I’ve got a good enough group to go to Sutton and that’s the only thing on my mind at the moment.
“We’ll take a group down there and prepare properly, we’ll hopefully put on the right sort of performance for our travelling supporters which will then set us up for what will be a fantastic thing after that.”