Civelli could be out until Christmas

LUCIANO Civelli's knee injury is so severe that he could be out of action for up to nine months.The EADT can today reveal there are fears that the Argentinean's injury is so serious that he will not be back playing until Christmas - September at the absolute earliest.

Derek Davis

EXCLUSIVE

By Derek Davis

LUCIANO Civelli's knee injury is so severe that he could be out of action for up to nine months.


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The EADT can today reveal there are fears that the Argentinean's injury is so serious that he will not be back playing until Christmas - September at the absolute earliest.

The 22-year-old has been pencilled in for exploratory surgery early next week with another operation expected to follow to repair serious ligament and probable cartilage damage.

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Civelli injured his knee in the closing moments of Town's 1-1 draw with Burnley on Tuesday and it was immediately obvious how much pain he was in and was comforted on the pitch by Pablo Counago as he was attended by St John ambulance staff and the club physio Mark Endicott.

The �1m signing from Banfield gave a thumbs-up sign as he was carried off of a medicart while clutching an oxygen mask.

After spending the night in hospital in Ipswich he was released on Wednesday afternoon and will be cared for at home until he needs to go back.

Civelli will be allowed to return to Buenos Aires after surgery and be regularly assessed by Town staff and specialists during the long process of rehabilitation, there and in England.

The severity of the injury would have had one time been career ending but a number of top players with similar problems, including Alan Shearer, Paul Gascoigne and Michael Owen have made full recoveries in the past.

Civelli has made an impressive start to his Town career after signing in January making eight starts in the number 13 shirt, which he did consider lucky.

With Civelli missing out today Alan Quinn could come back into the midfield, although the left-footed Giovani Dos Santos on loan from Spurs, can play on either flank or up front.

Pim Balkestein will be hoping to force his way back into the heart of defence at the expense of Iv�n Campo.

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk

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