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14:15 9th October 2012
Mark McGhee is coming to terms with the fact that he will be missing his captain Matt Gill for at least six weeks.
The midfielder has been playing through a knee problem since the start of the season, but will now undergo an exploratory procedure to try and find and eliminate the problem.
Mark says he will looking in to brining in a replacement, but finance could be a problem.
He said: “Matt is now going to have a procedure. The scan was not conclusive, so they will do a little procedure to look inside and to see what is going on.
“He is going to be out for several weeks, four to six weeks at this stage, but if it is anything worse than simply needing a bit of a clean out then it could be anything up to 12 weeks.
“He has been playing and training through the problem, and occasionally missing training - although not often.
“He has been gritting his teeth and getting through it, and I think he has done pretty well and I have a lot of respect for that.
“A lot of players would have coped out, especially given some of the results we have had, they might have taken the easy option, but he wanted to keep playing as long as he could, and we are grateful for that.
“I think that we should look at bringing in a replacement. They are all young lads and I think Matt brings an experience that we need to replace.
“I will be looking, however, I don’t have any fears that if we don’t bring anyone in, one of the current lads wont step up.
“There are options coming along that mean that perhaps we wont have to bring anyone in, but it is something we would consider and it depends how long Matt will be out.
“The problem we have is finance, we cannot just keep going on spending money. A, we have the 55% cap and B, we are kind of done with money.
“So we will have to look at the squad and see if there are any sacrifices we need to make in order to find that player if we think it is necessary. The board have been brilliant in supporting the team as much as they possibly can.”
Strikers Dave Clarkson and Derek Riordan were also injury concerns on Saturday, but the manager is confident they will be available for Saturday.
He said: “Clarkson is having treatment today and not training, but I imagine he will be training by Friday and will play on Saturday.
“Derek was complaining before the game that his hamstring was a bit fatigued, he needs strength work and training, which will improve his generally fitness, and he will be fine. I think he will get better and better for us, and he will get goals.”
And the manager is hopeful that Danny Woodards will be back in contention within the next few weeks, and Shaquille Hunter has also begun light training.
Mark said: “Danny Woodards is back in full contact training – in other words the rest of the squad have permission to kick him!
“They are still being a bit precious with Shaq, he is allowed to join in the keep ball, but they are under strict instructions not to kick him.
“Danny is a fit lad and looks after himself, and he will get back as quick as he possibly can.
“I would imagine he will need a full week’s training this week, he will need to play some part in a game the following week, and then probably two weeks from this Saturday he might be available to come back into contention.”
And it has been hard for the manager to field a consistent side with all the injury problems he has suffered.
He said: “It is the way the season has been, it has been two steps forward and one step back, or at times one step forward and two steps back.
“With the loss of the likes of Matty Harrold, and early on we knew we were without Shaqs and Danny and Scott Bevan. Then we lost Garry Kenneth and Cian Bolger and these things have set us back.
“Then there was Tom Parkes missing Wednesday night, I think he could have been the difference between us getting a draw and losing the game.
“These things have set us back, but it is a long, long season, you just hope that eventually a fair wind will benefit us and we will be blown along with a full squad.”
For the full interview, visit Gas Player.
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