Iron manager Russ Wilcox admitted a growing injury list could see him forced to delve back into the loan market when it re-opens next week.He was speaking following his side’s 2-0 defeat to Bristol City at Ashton Gate.
The beginning of United’s League One campaign has been heavily disrupted by a series of long-term injuries to a number of mainstays from the 2013/2014 promotion season, with the likes of Sam Slocombe and David Mirfin still some way from a return to competitive action.
Those absences led to Wilcox strengthening his hand with the temporary additions of Luke O’Neill, Miles Addison and Bobby Olejnik, but a recent problem suffered by the former has further compounded the situation, and the 50-year-old told The Iron Player: “I’ll sit down with the Chairman, and we’ll look at it.
“We’ll see what’s happening with Luke, and see how long he’s out for. He’s gone back to Burnley for treatment, but we’re hoping it’s only going to be a short-term injury as we’ve got him for 93 days on loan.
“If it’s bad news on Luke, which it probably will be the way things are going at the moment, we’ll have to look at the right-back slot. We can’t go through a difficult period with just one right-back in the building.”
United have been left cursing their luck at seeing a core element of their record-breaking League Two runners-up team ruled out of action for much of the early part of the current season, and Wilcox added: “We’ve had a lot of injuries to key players in the spine of the team right from day one when we lost Dave Syers for the season five minutes in.
“He scored 10 goals for us from midfield last season, and it’s very difficult to replace important players like that. We are short, but I’ve still been able to put out a quality team.
“What I will say is the players who have been given the opportunity have grasped it with both hands, and hopefully people will see we are a hard-working, organised outfit. People are working hard for this football club.
“We’re in a position in the league where we don’t want to be, but there’s lots to play for, and 40 games to go at. We’ve got to keep spirits high in the group, which won’t be a problem as they’re a good set of lads, and go again next week."
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