Russ Wilcox admits midfielder Dave Syers could be out for a while after injuring his knee at Swindon.Syers took a knock just four minutes into the season opener and he continued to struggle before being taken off in the tenth minute, with Deon Burton replacing him as the Iron altered from the 4-5-1 formation to deploy two forwards.
He netted ten times for the Iron last season since his arrival from Doncaster and the Iron boss was downhearted about the 26-year-old’s injury, which could keep him on the sidelines for a large chunk of the campaign.
Wilcox told The Iron Player: “It’s not looking good for Dave, we don’t know the extent of it but we know it’s a knee injury.
“He’s got a brace on at the moment and he’s on crutches, it looks a longer-term injury and everybody hopes he will be back soon because he played such a part in our promotion last season.”
One positive the United boss definitely took from the match was the liveliness of Irish forward Paddy Madden, who grabbed a goal to reduce the deficit and put the Iron on top of possession in search of an equalising goal.
He believes the 24-year-old, who won the Golden Boot in this division with Yeovil two seasons ago, could be a key man for his side over the next nine or ten months.
“Paddy will be disappointed he hasn’t walked away with the match ball - he had four really good opportunities he would have put away on another day," said Wilcox.
“What I will say is he has hit the target and they got lucky. He’s getting opportunities and that’s key for any striker. If that keeps happening, he will score goals and I think his finish was terrific after a great bit of back-to-front play from the team.”
The defeat was only the manager’s second competitive loss and he is relishing the challenge of a much tougher division in 2014/15 and he hinted there may be a couple of new faces arriving at Glanford Park in the coming weeks.
He said: “This is what we are here for. We want to come to top League One teams like Swindon, we don’t want to sit back in League Two. We want to move the club forward and try to do our best League One.
“I’ll have a conversation with the chairman to see what we can do to fill those holes as Dave (Mirfin) isn’t going to be available for at least a few more weeks and we have lost Marcus for three matches, although luckily one’s a cup game.
“We’re content with what we have higher up the pitch, although we could do with adding one more.
“We’re always on the look out but we’ve got to make sure what we are getting through the door is right for this club. My thoughts have changed with Dave Syers out and Marcus Williams’ suspension so it will be a busy time ahead.”
It will be a quick turnaround for United, who will face a trip to Ewood Park in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday, for the first round tie with Blackburn. The manager is backing his side to bounce back, if not Tuesday, then at Glanford Park against Preston on Saturday.
“It doesn’t get any easier with Blackburn on Tuesday,” he admitted.
“Then there’s Preston (at the weekend) who were in the play-offs last season.
"We have to remain positive, focussed and upbeat and that’s the key. There’s disappointments but we are only one game in and you have to give them some credit for the players’ fantastic response on Saturday.
"I've seen situations where teams lay down and concede four or five goals but ultimately we have to improve minor details such as ball retention as you get punished in this division as they are much more clinical.”
See much more from Russ Wilcox, and others, on The Iron Player.