Thatcher out for up to six weeks

INJURIES could force Jim Magilton to delve even deeper into his squad for the next two home games.

Derek Davis

INJURIES could force Jim Magilton to delve even deeper into his squad for the next two home games.

Ben Thatcher has been ruled out for up to six weeks with a torn thigh muscle, while Moritz Volz has tweaked a hamstring and David Wright missed Wednesday cup defeat by Wigan after picking up a slight groin injury in the morning training session.

Thatcher tore the thigh in the first half of the Wigan game after going back into the side following a dead leg.

Volz and Wright are doubts for the Crystal Palace game, although both will be given every opportunity to prove their fitness.

Should either or both fail then Magilton will call on Alex Bruce at right back and Pim Balkestein on the left.

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Club physio Matt Byard said: “Wrighty reported a tweak in his calf when he did some light work on Wednesday morning.

“Moritz played against Wigan but his hamstring tightened up after the game and we will have to see how he is on Friday.”

Jaime Peters has operated at right back in pre-season and reserve games, while left-footed Kurt Robinson is likely to be put on stand by to provide extra cover if needed.

Better news on the injury front is that Pablo Counago will train today after initial fears that he would miss a reasonable chunk of the season with ankle ligament damage.