Blackpool have been “devastated” to learn Henry Cameron will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury.
The 18-year-old winger was stretchered off on his international debut for New Zealand in a friendly away to Oman on Wednesday, with scans revealing a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.
Cameron lasted just 42 minutes of New Zealand’s 1-0 win in the Middle Eastern city of Seeb, and Pool manager Neil McDonald said the injury has come as a huge blow to everyone at the club.
“It was devastating to hear the news,” he said. “It wasn’t a tackle – he went to close someone down and slipped on the pitch.
“It was one of those accidents really. Those things happen but we’ll make sure he’s given the best treatment.”
Cameron is in his first full season as a professional player, after breaking through the club’s youth ranks last season.
He has made 16 appearances this term for Pool, and boss McDonald feels his displays should fill him with hope for the future.
The manager said: “It’s really bad for the lad. He’s had a tremendous season so far. He carried the team at the start of the season. He had some really good performances and that earned him the call-up for New Zealand.
“He hasn’t played many games for Blackpool but he’s already a full international, so even though his season is finished it’s been brilliant for him.
“We’ll now have to do without him for the season.”
Cameron has returned to the Fylde coast for treatment but is likely to be out of action until the start of next season at the earliest.
McDonald added: “I’ve spoken to the New Zealand manager and he’s gutted for Henry. We are gutted for Henry and he’s obviously gutted.
“We’ll get him right. He’ll come back stronger and it will be an experience for him.
“When he comes back, I hope he’ll be stronger for it.”