MATT Gilks has suffered a new injury setback and limped off just 14 minutes into his comeback match.
The calf strain the keeper suffered in Blackpool Reserves’ 7-2 defeat by ten-man Chelsea yesterday is not believed to be serious but it will almost certainly wreck his hopes of a return to first-team action in Saturday’s vital relegation clash at Blackburn.
Gilks was playing his first match since breaking a kneecap at West Ham in November.
He returned to training a fortnight ago and was expected to feature in Ian Holloway’s squad for Ewood Park if he came through yesterday’s match at Chelsea’s Cobham training base unscathed.
Gilks said: “It was a blow not to make it through the full 90 minutes but it isn’t a recurrence of the knee injury or anything like that – it’s just a slight strain. It felt a bit tight before the game, probably because I’ve been doing so much rehabilitation work in the gym and on the training ground and working so hard.
“It got worse as the game started and I came off as a precaution. It’s nothing serious, only a minor setback, and hopefully I’ll be back soon.”
Pool were 1-0 up when Gilks went off, Malaury Martin having converted from the penalty spot after Daniel Pappoe was dismissed for a foul on Sergei Kornilenko.
But then it all went pear-shaped for Pool as Chelsea cruising to victory thanks to strikes from Adam Phillip (2), Fabio Borini, Milan Lalkovic, Billy Clifford and Todd Kane, plus an own goal from Chris Basham – his second in a week for the reserves, after putting through his own net against Manchester United.
Kornilenko scored Pool’s second, finishing well after a good pass from skipper Liam Tomsett.