Millwall have been dealt a significant injury blow – with influential midfielder Ryan Leonard expected to miss around two months of action.
Leonard has been one of the Lions’ most consistent performers this term, but could now be sidelined for up to 12 matches after suffering ankle ligament damage against Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.
The former Southend United man was replaced by Shaun Williams in the 60th-minute, who went on to assist Scott Malone’s impressive strike moments later, but isn’t expected to return to playing action until the middle of April.
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January signing Maikel Kieftenbeld also sustained an injured against the Owls, leaving Lions boss Gary Rowett with a possible shortage of midfielders ahead of the trip to Reading on Saturday, but NewsatDen confirmed that youngster Billy Mitchell could be available for selection after his injury.
Leonard has been in terrific form for Millwall this season, making 30 appearances in a variety of position in all competitions, and triggered a clause in his contract back in December, which saw him extend his stay at The Den by an additional year.
But with Leonard now set to miss the majority of the campaign, Rowett will be hoping the likes of Williams, Ryan Woods and inform Ben Thompson will all step up in his absence.
Here’s how the Lions faithful reacted on Twitter to Leonard’s injury blow.
Great 🙈 really starts to show what he can do and we lose him. Get well soon Ryan.
— david harry webb (@davidharrywebb) February 10, 2021
Makes the George Evans signing even more timely. Billy M approaching fitness too.
— Nick Callaghan (@lmstepney1) February 10, 2021
That’s a massive blow for us he has been outstanding for us
— LionsLibra 🦁 🏴 (@lionslibra) February 10, 2021
Massive blow to lose Lenny for 2 months, any update on Kieftenbeld?
— alex smithson (@cheesealexs123) February 10, 2021
— loisxoxo (@loiswhipple95) February 10, 2021
Massive blow that
— Dolbs (@MillwallDolbs3) February 10, 2021
Gutted player of the season so far. Let's hope Thommo can push on now like he did on Saturday https://t.co/ttcsHstwhl
— Tony Pike (@tonypike11) February 10, 2021
Gutting – player of the season so far.
Again shows how vital it was that we got someone more attacking in at CM in January. For all of his strengths and his flaws, we're now going to have to persist with Ben until the end of the season, or at least until Mahoney is fit #Millwall https://t.co/0wojFBrmAa
— Jack Clarke (@jack_clarke) February 10, 2021
Gutting. Been very good lately, one of the better players in recent months for me. https://t.co/gHX3U2AeHO
— Mark.. (@MLong94) February 10, 2021
Just what we needed, arguably are best player this season. Hopefully others can come in and step up https://t.co/aPMlFjM9mi
— Rich 👊🏽🦁👑 (@RICH_SE16) February 10, 2021