Frankie McAvoy has revealed he could look to take Connor Wickham out of his 25-man squad if his hamstring injury turns out to be a serious one.
After not featuring for Crystal Palace in the entirety of last season, the 28-year-old became a free agent during the summer and after spending weeks on trial with the Lilywhites, Wickham penned a four-month contract with the club.
He subsequently made his debut a few days later with an appearance from the substitute bench against West Bromwich Albion, but disaster struck in midweek after he started against Cheltenham Town in the Carabao Cup.
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Wickham pulled up after just a few minutes clutching his hamstring and had to be withdrawn in what could end up being his one and only start as a PNE player.
The severity of the injury is not yet known with Wickham set to see a specialist this coming week, but in the event that it rules him out for a number of months, PNE head coach McAvoy could ask the EFL for special dispensation to free up a squad space by taking the forward out.
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“We will see how Connor is once we get the specialists’ opinion back on him and recommendations – we will see what happens there,” McAvoy said following North End’s goalless draw with Birmingham City, per LancsLive.
“We just need to wait and see what comes back and if that does (that he will be missing until new year), we will probably look to try and do that (take him out).
“We’d need to try and see if that was an option.
“You need to look for a bit of dispensation and our guys would deal with that – we just need to see how Connor is.”
It’s a desperately disappointing situation for Wickham and if the injury proves to be a hamstring tear then he’s likely already played his last game for PNE.
You could tell from the moment he went down that it looked to be a bad one and it just shows that Wickham isn’t getting much luck at this moment in time.
He could have added something different to McAvoy’s options up-front but with his past injury record it was always going to be a risk.
The fact that the club are deliberating trying to take Wickham out of the squad looks like they know it could be a bad injury and it would be interesting if North End try and target another free agent striker who could offer something different.