Sport Soccer

Saturday 20 January 2018

Anxious wait for unlucky McCarthy


Eleanor Crooks

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez fears the worst about James McCarthy's ankle injury after the midfielder was carried off at the DW Stadium yesterday.

The 19-year-old Republic of Ireland midfielder was left writhing in agony following Fabrice Muamba's first-half challenge and received lengthy treatment on the pitch before leaving on a stretcher.

McCarthy, who has played in all Wigan's Premier League games this season, was taken to hospital, and player and manager must now wait for the results of an X-ray that will determine how long he will spend on the sidelines.

"He's gone to the hospital and we'll get the results over the next 24 hours but it doesn't look too good," said Martinez. "It's a real shame because he's a very young man but he's very mature on the pitch and he's been performing in a very special manner."

The Spaniard, though, did not attach any blame to Muamba for the challenge, which was from behind but came after Latics captain Antolin Alcaraz put his team-mate in trouble with a poor pass.

"When you look at the replay, he clearly gets his ankle first. It's disappointing. But he's young and he's very, very fit and we hope it's not as bad as it looks."

Bolton boss Owen Coyle saw the situation in much the same way and is keeping his fingers crossed McCarthy is not seriously injured after watching him come through the ranks at Hamilton, who he left to join Wigan last summer.

"My thoughts are to make sure he's okay because I've known him as a young kid progressing all the way through in Scotland to where he is now, and there's no doubt he's destined for a glittering career."

The hosts took the lead with 59 minutes gone as a lovely move involving Charles N'Zogbia and Franco Di Santo ended with Hugo Rodallega beating Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Bolton took only seven minutes to equalise through Johan Elmander, as the Trotters made it five games unbeaten and Wigan four.

Sunday Independent

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