Injury worry over Wigan Athletic centre-back

Wigan Athletic acting manager Leam Richardson is desperately hoping the ankle injury sustained by Adam Long at Rochdale isn't as serious as first feared.
Adam LongAdam Long
Adam Long

The 20-year-old Isle of Man native limped off after an hour of the 3-3 draw with Rochdale on Saturday in obvious distress.

He damaged an ankle in a desperate attempt to prevent Rochdale's second second goal crossing the line, after a mistake by goalkeeper Owen Evans.

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Having collided with the metal upright at the back of the goal-frame, Long required lengthy treatment before being helped off the field by the Latics medical staff.

And with loan stars Curtis Tilt (Rotherham) and Darnell Johnson (Leicester) having returned to their parent clubs, any absence for Long would leave 19-year-old Emeka Obi - an unused substitute at Spotland - as the only recognised centre-back on the books.

"Adam's clattered into the post at the back of the goal as he's tried to clear the ball," reported Richardson.

"We're still assessing him, but he looks to be in a bit of a pickle with his ankle.

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"He's a good kid, a tough kid, and fingers crossed we can get him back out there as quickly as possible."

Also in the wars at Spotland was forward Kyle Joseph, whose groin area was used as a launchpad for Rochdale defender Jim McNulty just before the break - which led to referee Bobby Madley rightly brandishing a straight red card.

Fortunately Joseph was able to continue and, although he'll have required an ice pack on his return home, his manager says it's an occupational hazard for a shooting star in the game.

"I've spoken to Kyle about this, and I've told him the reason players get frustrated with you - in whatever way that may be - is because you're frustrating them in other ways," added Richardson.

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"With the energy and the quality you're showing across the pitch, players will try to stop you in any way they see fit.

"Again I thought his energy levels and quality were very high.

"And the kid is only going to get better, because of the way he goes about his work."

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