United manager Nick Daws has confirmed goalkeeper Matt Gilks faces an extended spell of time out of action with the knee injury sustained in the League One play-off semi-final first leg against Rotherham.
The newly-appointed boss provided an update on the 35-year-old shotstopper in an interview with iFollow Iron, and said the former Wigan man is set to undergo surgery on his knee which will rule him out for a considerable amount of time.
ON THE INJURY…
ND: He’s had his consultation and the knee isn’t great. He’s going to have to undergo surgery that will rule him out for a huge chunk of next season. That’s where it stands at the moment. He’ll be a big loss for us during that time – not only with his ability as a goalkeeper but also his presence on the training pitch. He’ll remain in and around the changing room while he’s doing his rehabilitation and will be a big help to me and Andy (Dawson, assistant manager) as a senior professional. For him, it’s a disappointing end to what has been a great first season for us so it’s a shame. I really feel for him because there’s nothing worse than getting a serious injury at any stage of your career, but to pick one up in the twilight of your career is even harder. He’s a strong character and we have a great team of physios and consultants that we use so I’m sure we’ll get him back in the quickest possible time.
ND: I think Rory has all the capabilities to be an outstanding goalkeeper. He performed exceptionally well against Rotherham in difficult circumstances in the League One play-off semi-final second leg and pulled off a couple of saves that kept us in the game at that stage. That’s something we need to think about moving forward. I’ve had a conversation with Rory and challenged him to step up and be the No 1 next season, but we do have to think about the fact his understudy (Adam Kelsey) is still very young. It will be an ongoing process. Ideally we want two strong players for each position. We have the ability to use the loan market and make some later decisions, but Rory will get every opportunity at the start of the summer to grasp that No 1 spot.
ON NEW FIRST YEAR PROFESSIONAL ADAM KELSEY POSSIBLY GETTING EXPERIENCE OUT ON LOAN…
ND: We’ve had young Sam Riches, the first year Under-18s goalkeeper, away at Barton and playing men’s football and that’s something Adam has not been able to do. It’s something we’ll look at and consider if we bring in another goalkeeper.
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