Stoke City manager Michael O’Neill has revealed that goalkeeper Joe Bursik suffered a torn thigh muscle whilst away on international duty with the England Under-21 side.
Bursik was replaced by Adam Davies in their win over Peterborough on Saturday and will be out of action until the New Year.
Talking to official club media about Bursik’s fitness situation, O’Neill said: “Joe had a scan on his thigh on Thursday after returning from Under-21 duty and that revealed the extent of the injury.
“It’s another blow for us; we have no alternative but to take it on the chin and move on. We’re fortunate that we have two other good goalkeepers in Adam Davies and Jack Bonham at our disposal.
“More importantly, it’s a big setback for Joe. His career has been on an upward trajectory over the last couple of years but he’ll no doubt come back stronger for the experience aided by the help and support he will get from everyone at the Club.”
This news comes after centre back Harry Souttar was ruled out for the season after suffering a serious knee injury while away with Australia over the international break.
Following that win over Peterborough, Stoke are currently fourth in the Championship table, nine points adrift of the automatic promotion places, and are next in action when they travel to Ashton Gate to face Bristol City on Wednesday night.
It’s cruel blow for Bursik and Stoke.
Stoke have been incredibly unfortunate with injuries of late, especially to their own academy graduates. With Tyrese Campbell just return from a serious knee injury, it was an exciting period for Stoke City to see all of their talent on show.
With one coming back and two seemingly ruled out in the long term, it’s a frustration that O’Neill will have to deal with to now allow it to impact the season.
For Bursik, it’s disappointing given that he was recovering his form after a dip earlier in the season, but he will certainly come back stronger in the new year, and could still have a big part to play for Stoke during the campaign.