Bristol City have suffered yet more cruel injury fortune as manager Nigel Pearson confirmed hamstring problems for Liam Walsh and young striker Sam Bell.
The Robins have had wretched luck when it comes to having players on the sidelines this season, with almost every first-teamer being struck down with a problem at one time or another.
The likes of Jamie Paterson, Andreas Weimann, Chris Martin and many others remain absent and it’s these injuries that have allowed youngsters to come into the senior squad, including Ryley Towler and Sam Bell.
And it was Bell who received his first ever start for City yesterday, partnering Nahki Wells up-front and was given the nod over Famara Diedhiou who had only just returned from international duties with Senegal.
Bell’s debut lasted just 16 minutes though before he hobbled off to be replaced by Tyreeq Bakinson, and there was an evident serious problem for him to have his debut ended like that.
In his post-match briefing, Pearson confirmed Bell’s debut setback as a hamstring injury and also spoke about midfielder Walsh, who has missed most of the season with a torn thigh muscle but featured in the last three matches pre-Stoke, as he was absent from the matchday squad.
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“He’s still having a problem with his hamstring, again. We’ll have to see how he is,” Pearson said of Walsh, per the Bristol Post.
“I’ll keep you updated in the week, but I can’t give you a timeframe.”
It was a cruel blow for Bell to be withdrawn like that just minutes into his first start, and he may not get another chance this season to impress.
As for Walsh, another injury just caps off what has been a miserable season for the former Everton man.
After his loan last season with Coventry, big things were expected of the central midfielder, but he’s just been plagued by issues and the 2020/21 campaign will be seen as one to forget for him.