Middlesbrough boss Neil Warnock fears he could be without Marcus Browne for a while after he was stretchered off during their FA Cup defeat to Brentford.
Following the 2-1 loss in West London, Warnock described the attacking midfielder’s knee cap as ‘popping out and back in‘ in what sounded like a gruesome experience.
It comes at a time where Browne was perhaps set for an extended run in Boro’s starting line-up, having spent most of the 2020/21 season watching from the substitutes bench and the sidelines.
Browne had made just three short substitute appearances in the first 20 league games, but improvement in training and a cameo against Birmingham City to round off 2020 saw him thrust into the mix by Warnock as a starter against Wycombe.
And the 23-year-old started off 2021 with a bang, heading in Boro’s equaliser against the Chairboys and putting in an all-round impressive performance in a 3-1 win.
But after disaster struck against the Bees at the end of the first half last weekend, Browne faces an extended period on the sidelines with some kind of damage to his knee.
Warnock has now issued a further update on Browne’s condition and whilst there’s no official results yet, the prognosis doesn’t look too promising.
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“It doesn’t look very good for Marcus,” Warnock said to the club’s official website .
“But we’re not going to jump to conclusions. He sees the specialist today so again we will wait and see.”
It’s a terrible shame for Browne who was only just showing Warnock what he was all about as a player.
He could’ve been forgiven for thinking his time on Teesside was over a few months ago as he continued to sit on the bench, and then picked up a hamstring injury in November which set him back even further.
So to be struck down again – potentially for the long-term – is really unfortunate and with Boro only possessing a small squad, they will be hoping that there isn’t any lasting damage to Browne’s knee and that any time missed is minimal.