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Injury crisis may force City call-up for veteran defender Whitehead
10:10am Monday 2nd September 2013 in Sport
FORMER captain Stuart Whitehead could be brought out of semi-retirement to ease Worcester City’s defensive dilemma.
City are potentially without four centre-halves for this Saturday’s Skrill North match against Bradford Park Avenue at Aggborough.
Graham Hutchison suffered a suspected broken nose in last weekend’s 2-1 defeat at Boston United and Richard Munday tweaked his hamstring.
Summer signing Sam Smith is still recovering from knee surgery and left-back Shabir Khan, who can also operate in the middle, is suspended for the next three matches.
Hutchison is the most likely to be fit, while Ashley Walker slotted into the back line as a replacement against the Pilgrims.
But with finances tight to recruit cover, Whitehead, who opted to curtail his playing duties at the end of last season, could get a call from manager Carl Heeley.
The Worcester boss said: “It’s a good time to have a free week so we can have a look at the injuries and assess it. There are one or two options that we have should we need to call upon back-up.
“We’re five games in and we’ve got a few players missing so it’s punishing for us but that’s the way it is. We’ve got to manage and deal with it as best we can.
“The financial constraints are what they are, we can do our best but we’re not going to have a big squad.
“That’s the way it goes and we’ve just got to deal with it and move on.”
Heeley added of Walker’s performance: “Ash has had his opportunity. He’s been patient and done ever so well. He won’t let us down, I’m sure of that.”
Worcester find themselves 19th in the table after the first five games, however, Heeley believes his players are not too far behind what Boston have to offer, and the seventh-placed Lincolnshire outfit have 10 points.
The City boss explained: “If they are the benchmark for 10 points I’m not too despondent because we should have got at least a point.
“You get inconsistencies and frustrations with young players. We weren’t on the game in the first-half but in the second-half when we got close to people and stopped them playing we started dictating.
“I have to accept that’s where we are. Consistency comes with experience and just knowing when to slow the game down - we want to do everything at 100 miles an hour.
“As the season progresses I’d like to think that would improve.”
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