Cambridge United strikers Uche Ikpeazu and Adam McGurk suffer season-ending injuries
U's see striker agony strike again
Shaun Derry has described the injuries to strikers Uche Ikpeazu and Adam McGurk as disastrous as Cambridge United prepare to host Crawley Town in Sky Bet League Two this Saturday (April 22).
Ikpeazu has been ruled out for the rest of the campaign after suffering a dislocated shoulder in the 2-1 defeat at Portsmouth last weekend.
And that injury was compounded when McGurk suffered a serious hamstring tear in training on Monday.
“It’s disastrous really,” said United boss Derry. “I thought when he (Uche) fell on his shoulder on Saturday - as soon as he hit the floor - it was a serious one.
“But you have your fingers crossed until you see the specialist, and sadly for Uche his season has come to an end.”
Ikpeazu underwent surgery today (Thursday), but with the talisman injured it seemed an ideal opportunity for McGurk, whose campaign has been blighted by injury problems.
“It was 20 minutes into the session on Monday morning, just on the back of a warm-up and it was just one of those situations where it’s popped, but it’s popped pretty severely,” said Derry.
“It’s not just going to be a couple of weeks, it’s going to a season-ending injury. We’re not going to see both players back until pre-season.
“I think any forward/attacking player who witnessed Uche’s injury on Saturday would have seen that opportunity to play against Crawley, but for Adam that chance has gone now.
“It’s been a horrendous year for him. It’s disappointing not just for him personally – looking at it from the player’s angle first and foremost as no player wants to be injured, do they – but for us as a football club, it’s come at a terrible time.”
Derry has been left to rue the injuries suffered by his strikers this season, with Barry Corr again on the sidelines.
“It’s been a huge talking point throughout the season, these centre forwards that keep on getting injured for us and not being available for games,” he said.
“It’s been costly but what we have found is an alternative to still compete and we’re going to have to follow the same guidelines once again.”
And that brings Medy Elito, Gerry McDonagh and Ben Williamson into contention for the clash with Crawley at the Cambs Glass Stadium.
“We go into the game with them three,” said Derry. “When you see Barry Corr not being involved, Uche and now Adam, these guys have got to come to the front.
“We’ve seen in little fits just what Medy can do in an attacking sense, but for the other two, they need to basically prove over the next two, possibly five games, where their strengths are.”