Neil Critchley admits Blackpool defender James Husband might require surgery

James Husband might require surgery on the hamstring injury he suffered during last week’s defeat to Derby County.

Friday, 6th May 2022, 9:46 am

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The left-back was forced to hobble off in the 32nd minute at Bloomfield Road and could now face a race against time to be fit for the start of next season.

The 28-year-old was replaced by Luke Garbutt, who is expected to take his place in the side for today’s final game of the season against Peterborough United.

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Head coach Neil Critchley told The Gazette: “He’s had a scan and it’s going to be a while, so the summer is going to be important for him to recuperate and get his rehabilitation in.

“It’s not a one-week injury, but as you know I don’t like to put a timeframe on these things but it’s fair to say he’s going to have some work to do over the summer.”

When asked if the injury could require an operation, Critchley added: “We’re not sure yet, we’re hopeful it won’t do.

“It’s not an insignificant strain, but we’re not yet quite clear on the severity of it. It’s certainly not like a one-week injury though, it’s going to be longer than that.”

Husband suffered the injury during last week's game against Derby

Jordan Gabriel, Dujon Sterling and Grant Ward will remain sidelined, but Marvin Ekpiteta and Jordan Thorniley could both be available.

Ekpiteta missed last week’s defeat after suffering with cramp against Barnsley, while Thorniley was brought off at half-time as a precaution.

“Jordan Thorniley is not as bad, so we can make a call on him today so there’s a chance he could still be involved,” Critchley said.

“We’re hoping it was more of a fatigue/neural problem, because he’s feeling a lot better now and has recovered.

“It’s not a strain or a tear or anything, so he’s done a bit of mobility and strengthening work this week and we’re still hopeful he might be involved.

“Marvin is available and he’s up for selection.

“Jordan Gabriel has joined back in training a little bit but the game will come too soon for him, but other than that we’re pretty much where we were last weekend.”

Elsewhere, Sonny Carey could well feature having returned from a four-month lay-off to be included among the substitutes against Derby last weekend.

Critchley had hoped to bring Carey off the bench to give him some vital minutes, having not played since Boxing Day.

“You have a pre-plan before games because you’re always thinking about the ‘what-ifs?’, what if we’re losing, what if we need to score and so on,” Critchley said.

“Our pre-plan before the Derby game last week was to try and get Sonny on and get him on the pitch again.

“But with Hubby coming off with an injury and Jordan coming off at half-time, that meant we had to make two subs we hadn’t planned so it didn’t quite happen for Sonny.

“But he’s in our thoughts for the game.”

Tomorrow’s final game of the season against Posh kicks off at the earlier time of 12.30pm.