Sunderland Under-23 manager Elliott Dickman has revealed that Joel Lynch is set to escape serious injury after being forced off during the club’s clash with Middlesbrough yesterday.
The defender, who joined the Black Cats on a free transfer last month (via BBC Sport), has yet to make his debut for the first-team this season and was making his first appearance for the club’s youth side against the Smoggies.
In what turned out to be a enthralling game, Lynch nearly opened the scoring for Sunderland just minutes into the clash yet his header drifted over the bar.
The Black Cats eventually took the lead through Benjamin Kimpioka who converted from the penalty spot yet Boro quickly levelled up proceedings through Stephen Walker.
Walker then fired the Smoggies ahead in the second-half before Rumarn Burrell added a third for his side.
Although Sunderland were able to reduce the deficit in the closing stages of the match via a Williams Kokolo strike, Boro held on to secure victory in the Premier League 2 clash.
Speaking to the Sunderland Echo about the reasoning behind substituting Lynch, Dickman said: “He’s just felt something in his groin area.
“It wasn’t too bad, it was more of a precaution, as soon as he felt something it just made sense for him to come off.”
Whilst the news that Lynch has seemingly escaped serious injury will be greeted in a positive manner by manager Jack Ross, the defender is now facing a race to be fit for Saturday’s clash with Bolton Wanderers.
Considering that the 31-year-old has yet to full adapt to his new surroundings, it may be worth easing him into first-team action as doing so could minimise the risk of injury.
Keeping this in mind, it could be wise decision by Ross to hand Lynch over to the Under-23s for their upcoming clashes.