Worst fears are con­firmed as Vas­sell is out for 6 months

Birmingham Post - - SPORT - Foot­ball Writer

BIRM­ING­HAM City striker Isaac Vas­sell faces six months on the side­lines af­ter the sever­ity of his Sec­ond City derby in­jury was con­firmed.

The 24-year-old has suf­fered a rup­tured cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment, which looks set to have ended his sea­son pre­ma­turely.

The for­mer Lu­ton favourite was forced off in the first half of Blues’ 0-0 draw with Villa on Sun­day fol­low­ing a chal­lenge with Alan Hut­ton.

Blues boss Steve Cotterill con­firmed the blow and must now find a re­place­ment to lead the line against Brent­ford tonight.

“He’s had a scan and has got a rup­tured cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment. It’s not good news for the foot­ball club and it’s not good news for the player as well, so we have to get over that,” Cotterill said.

“It’s not some­thing I wanted as a man­ager be­cause he is a young player I was re­ally, re­ally en­joy­ing work­ing with and he’s a great lad.

“And I think by the end of the sea­son it would have been a good learn­ing curve for him for go­ing on in his ca­reer.

“Now the learn­ing is put back six months. It’s a real blow for him. It is a real neg­a­tive. You get these things that come up in foot­ball.

“The worst thing about things al­ways hap­pen to lads.

“For­get how quick he is, for­get how it is these the good strong he is, for­get what could have in the game.

“He is an ab­so­lute delight to work with. When­ever you con­verse with him out on the train­ing ground, he wants to learn. It is a blow for us, for sure.”

The man­ager re­fused to point the fin­ger at Hut­ton, whose tackle ap­pears to have caused the prob­lem.

“I don’t think you can blame any­one. It wasn’t like it was a bonecrunch­ing or reck­less tackle. It’s just fu­ture he one of those things that hap­pens. There is no blame con­nected to any­one at As­ton Villa, that has to be made clear,” added Cotterill.

Vas­sell joined from the Hat­ters in Au­gust, since when he has made ten ap­pear­ances and scored one goal.

How­ever, he has started the last three games and seemed to have ce­mented him­self into the XI with a se­ries of bright per­for­mances.

Mean­while, Cotterill is not con­sid­er­ing call­ing an early end to Sam Gal- lagher’s loan deal. Asked about na­tional me­dia re­ports that Gal­lagher could be set for a re­turn to Southamp­ton, Cotterill said: “That’s new to me so there’s prob­a­bly a lit­tle bit of agent talk there I would imag­ine.

“That hasn’t been dis­cussed with Sam. I don’t quite know where that has come from – and even if I had thought about it I wouldn’t tell any­body any­way.

“It’s not some­thing that’s head at this mo­ment in time.” in my

By Brian Dick > Blues for­ward Isaac Vas­sell

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