U's hope on Halford

COLCHESTER United boss Geraint Williams is hoping that Greg Halford will be fit to return for the U's daunting trip to Sunderland next weekend.Halford missed his first game of the season at Leeds United last Saturday after failing a fitness test on an ankle injury.

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United boss Geraint Williams is hoping that Greg Halford will be fit to return for the U's daunting trip to Sunderland next weekend.

Halford missed his first game of the season at Leeds United last Saturday after failing a fitness test on an ankle injury. The 21-year-old looked on helplessly from the dugout as the U's slumped to a 3-0 defeat.

“Greg (Halford) has taken a few bangs on the ankle already this season,” revealed Williams last night.


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“It was very sore over the weekend and he didn't feel right to play. We are going to let the injury settle down and he should be training again this week.

“It's still too early to say but, hopefully, Greg will be back ready for the trip to Sunderland,” confirmed Williams.

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Halford had started the U's first 17 league and cup games of the season, operating as a right-back. He continues to attract the interest of other clubs, and the speculation surrounding his future will again no doubt return when the transfer window reopens in January.

The absence of Halford, together with the injured duo of Kevin Watson and Richard Garcia, certainly hampered the U's cause in their first ever visit to Elland Road for a league match. Both Watson (tight calf) and Garcia (ankle injury) have missed the last four games.

Williams said: “Kevin (Watson) is coming along well. He started running at the end of last week, and has now joined in training again.

“Richard (Garcia) is a little behind with his recovery. He has still felt a little pain in the ankle, while trying to work through the injury. He's a bit slower than Kevin in his comeback, but who knows what can happen in the next four or five days?”

Despite Saturday's defeat, which was their heaviest of the season, the U's remain in a healthy 11th spot in the Championship table.

Williams added: “It was very quiet on the journey back from Leeds.

“For the first time this season, we didn't do ourselves justice, and that includes the players and the management team.

“However, it was the first time in 18 games that we had not been in the game, and we want to put it right at Sunderland.”

Meanwhile, the U's will not be pursuing their interest in Finnish defender Sampsa Timoska, who recently had a trial at Layer Road.

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