ADRIAN Lopez has been ruled out for up to 10 weeks as Wigan Athletic’s injury crisis shows no sign of easing.
The Spaniard pulled a hamstring in the closing stages of the 2-1 defeat at Norwich last weekend, manfully carrying on until the end as Latics had used all of their substitutions.
However, Lopez has paid the penalty for his bravery, with boss Roberto Martinez admitting he fears the worst.
“We are waiting on the results of another scan, but Adrian has a tear to his hamstring and it will probably be between six and 10 weeks,” Martinez told the Evening Post.
“It’s a shame because Adrian has never had a soft-tissue injury before.
“He is a sprinter and he has a real sprinter’s muscles – and you don’t usually see people like picking up this kind of injury.”
There was better news concerning James McCarthy, with scans clearing him of ankle ligament damage.
McCarthy was caught late by Canaries midfielder Bradley Johnson in the first half at Carrow Road, the Ireland ace punching the ground in anger as he winced in pain.
“You knew it was a bad injury straight away because he got caught right on the ankle, and James’ reaction was completely understandable,” Martinez added.
“He knew he was hurt and he tried to stay on the pitch – and he wanted to play the second half as well but the injury was too serious.
“We’ve had the scan and he has a sprain in his ankle, and we need to see how that develops.
“Any sort of injury is disappointing, although we are relieved that it is not a really bad tear to his ligament.
“He’s been working really hard this past two days, accelerating the recovery process, but it’s too early to tell if he’ll be okay for the weekend.
“It’s always a worry when a player has to come off during a game but, knowing James, his recovery period will be a lot shorter than most other players.
“He hasn’t rejoined the group yet – he’ll be doing his own training routine for the next couple of days – and it will probably be Friday before we find out whether he’ll be all right to play.”
Martinez also refused to rule out the possibility of Gary Caldwell, Antolin Alcaraz or Ivan Ramis making a welcome return from long-term injury for Saturday’s visit of Arsenal.
“None of the three have rejoined the group yet but they are all stepping up their recovery programme,” the Wigan boss revealed.
“At the moment I don’t know if any of them will be available, but what is sure is that we won’t be rushing them back.
“It would be very wrong for us to rush a player back and then risk losing him for a much longer period.”