Barrow AFC boss in market for defensive cover
Last updated at 16:18, Monday, 04 February 2013
BARROW AFC boss Dave Bayliss will redouble his efforts to reinforce his depleted defensive ranks after centre-back Danny O’Donnell was ruled out of action with a dislocated shoulder.
Bayliss fears the 26-year-old Liverpudlian could be confined to the treatment room for “a few weeks” after he sustained the injury by colliding with Bluebirds goalkeeper Danny Hurst in the 31st minute of Saturday’s superb 1-0 victory over promotion hopefuls Luton Town.
However, the full extent of the injury was unknown over the weekend with O’Donnell expected to have his injured right shoulder X-rayed in the near future.
While O’Donnell’s debut outing was cruelly cut short Bayliss intends to dip back into the transfer market after being left with just two fit centre-backs – skipper Mike Pearson and Sean Hessey.
The Bluebirds boss revealed he has already lined up a deal to bring in the young free-agent defender – who can play at right back or at centre-half – he pursued last week.
And he could also push ahead with his ongoing bid to bring in a second defender after his initial attempt to bring the player to Holker Street hit the buffers before last Thursday’s transfer deadline.
O’Donnell was cup-tied for tomorrow night’s FA Trophy clash at Conference North side Gainsborough Trinity (7.45pm), but Bayliss said: “It’s disappointing for us because we needed strength-in-depth and have more numbers and it looks like we’ll lose Danny for a few weeks now.
“But we’ll have to bring someone else in. I don’t think the chairman will be too happy, but there is nothing you can do about it.
“We’ve got to get players in and we need to strengthen again.”
Bayliss remained tight-lipped over the identities of his two defensive targets, but it appears the arrival of the young versatile defender appears imminent after he parted company with an unnamed club.
Referring to the defender, Bayliss added: “He is going to come to us. He’s been at a club but he’s been released, so we’ll bring him in.
“I don’t know how ready he is to play week-in-week-out at this level but he’ll add another body that we need.
“But we’ll be speaking to the chairman again about bringing in another centre-back because we can’t go through the remaining 19 league games with two centre-backs if Danny O’Donnell is struggling.”
But Bayliss’s attempts to negotiate a deal for his second defensive target could prove more problematic after the player stalled on a move to the Bluebirds in order to fight for his place at his parent club.
With a loan deal likely to be in the offing, assuming the defender remains with his current club, Bayliss insisted: “That deal is still on the go so we’ve got to keep looking and if he becomes available then we’ll take him.
“But he is on the bench for a team at the moment. The player’s club gave us permission to take him but he’s on the bench at the moment so he decided to stay where he is at the moment rather than come here. But that deal is not dead.”
Without the extra reinforcements Barrow will be left to fight on two fronts – the league and the FA Trophy – with one of the smallest squads in the Blue Square Bet Premier. But following the arrival of O’Donnell, and fellow January recruits Danny L Rowe and Lee McEvilly, Bayliss says he has no complaints over the support offered to him by chairman Brian Keen and his board.
“If you look at our squad compared to Luton’s and a lot of teams in this division we are short on numbers,” said Bayliss.
“I think we’ll go to Gainsborough with 13 players. We need strength-in-depth but that’s down to the chairman to back me on that front.
“If he does that then I will be able to bring in more players.
“We possibly need two or three more players. We’d like to strengthen other areas (on top of added defensive cover) as well but we’ll see.
“The board have been brilliant and have never been a problem as they’ve helped us whenever we’ve needed it.
“We’ve still got to be sensible as well because we’re not getting great crowds so the finances aren’t there. But we need to dig ourselves out of the bottom four. We can only do that through having more players.”
Bayliss will also be without McEvilly for tomorrow’s trip to Lincolnshire-based Gainsborough as he joins O’Donnell and Danny L Rowe in being cup-tied for the clash.
O’Donnell, who is targeting a quick return to action, said: “I landed funny on my shoulder and felt it pop out straight away.
“It popped back into the joint I think and the movement in there was okay, but once you have popped it the ligaments start to swell and it only got worse.
“I tried to play on but the injury was only getting worse and I thought that for the sake of the team there was no point playing at 50 per cent fitness.
“I’m not sure how long I will be out at the moment. I’ve got to have an x-ray and if nothing is broken and everything is in place then hopefully I should be back and available again. The sooner that happens the better.
“The shoulder is very sore and so I have got to keep it immobilised for the time being until I get the okay from the hospital that I’m okay to move it.
“Frustrating isn’t the word in describing how I feel about getting injured, although words can’t describe how gutted I am.
“The fact that we managed to see the game through and take the three points has made the situation a little bit sweeter.
“But all I wanted to do was to get back playing and I thought we did well and looked solid for the first 40 minutes.”
First published at 14:28, Monday, 04 February 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
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