Chris Wilder has confirmed the news no Sheffield United fan wanted to hear and admitted that John Fleck will miss between four and six weeks through injury.
The Scottish midfielder has failed to really get going ever since lockdown and Wilder confirmed the latest blow for Fleck following today’s 1-1 draw with Fulham.
It is the latest in a long line of injury problems for the Blades boss this season. Oliver Burke was carrying a knock heading into today’s clash, while David McGoldrick only recovered at the last minute.
Jack O’Connell is missing for most of the season, while Max Lowe saw his Premier League debut cut short, going off with a concussion after less than 20 minutes.
And with United failing to bring in a creative midfield player or left centre-back cover before Friday’s EFL deadline, it leaves a bit of a gaping hole in the Blades’ starting XI.
John Lundstram was tasked with replacing Fleck today, while Ben Osborn has stepped in previously.
Fleck has picked up a back injury, Wilder confirmed. That in itself is worrying, given the nature and sensitivity to that area of the body.
A massive loss, our luck has turned a bit this term
Losing O’Connell was bad enough, but to then lose Fleck, a player who plays on the same side of the pitch and is so influential for the Blades is massive.
It also makes the decision to send Luke Freeman out on loan look like a strange one. More so, we suddenly look very light on midfield options, especially if another player picks up any sort of knock.
With a bit of luck Fleck can get some help from the medical gods but it doesn’t look like we’ll be seeing the Scot until at least after the next international break.