Winger Andy Welsh has suffered a minor setback as he continues his attempts to get back into the first team squad, United manager Russ Wilcox has confirmed.The former Carlisle man completed his first 90 minutes since September during the reserves’ 3-0 away win at Mansfield, however it came at a cost.
Welsh, who had been out of action due to a knee injury, but he sustained an Achilles injury which has put his return to the squad on hold.
Wilcox told The Iron Player: “It was great to see Andy Welsh back out on the pitch playing the full 90 minutes against Mansfield but he has had a little setback.
“He picked up an Achilles problem, which I think was down to the hard pitch.
“It was his first game back and he played the full game and unfortunately his Achilles is just inflamed slightly.
“Hopefully, that’ll settle down and we’ll be able to see what stage he is at early next week.”
Defender David Mirfin missed training on Tuesday through illness, however, at his midweek press conference Wilcox was unsure how long he’d be out for.
He is hopeful that Mirfin would be well enough to partner Niall Canavan at the heart of the defence for Saturday’s home game against Northampton on Saturday.
Wilcox said: “I don’t really know what the situation with David is at the minute.
“We didn’t know he was ill until this morning at training. Fingers crossed it is just a 24 hour bug and hopefully he will be fine for the weekend.”
Meanwhile, Gary McSheffrey missed last weekend’s match at Newport County due to a back injury.
The former Coventry winger was fit enough to travel, with the intention of being on the bench, however he didn’t feel right during the warm up and this resulted in him being left out of the match day squad completely.
“We are hoping to have him back on the training ground come Thursday but again we need him to be right,” the Iron boss explained.
“If that is not the case then we’ll have to leave it for the weekend.
“He’ll have to use his experience, he has had that complaint with his back before and in the past it has usually taken him four or five days to recover."
“He is normally okay after that,” the United chief continued.
“He was okay on Saturday to go on the bench but he felt a couple of twinges during the warm up so we felt it wasn’t worth the risk.
“I didn’t want to put him on to the pitch especially with the conditions of the pitch."
Wilcox added: “It was a risk we didn’t take so it just gave another player the opportunity to get some game time under their belt.”
First team professional Luke Hornsey is back in first team training following his injury lay-off but it was confirmed he wasn’t used during last week’s reserve game at Mansfield as the game came too early.
Hornsey had been back in training for a few days and Wilcox felt it was best if he got more time on the training ground under his belt before he went back into a competitive match situation.
Finally Deon Burton is continuing to make slow progress from his calf injury and Wilcox says “we’ll be extremely lucky if we have him back before the end of March.”
Burton has been out injured since the end of January and it was initially expected that he’d be out until the middle of March, but scans the other week showed the progress he was making was much slower than anticipated – therefore a return date was pushed back a few weeks.
"He is coming along but it is really slow progression,” Wilcox told the local media.
“That’s disappointing for us but that is how it is.
“We have to deal with what is in front of us, it is frustrating for both Deon and Darren.
“We can’t quite put our finger on how long he will be out for.”
Wilcox added: “We just have to play it day by day.”
See much more from Russ Wilcox on The Iron Player.