According to the Chronicle, Matt Ritchie has undergone a ‘small operation’ as he battles to overcome an ankle ligament injury.
The wing-back suffered a nasty injury at the hands of Hamza Choudhury in August’s Carabao Cup clash with Leicester and, although he was tipped to return at the back end of last month, it looks like we could be without him for another few weeks.
Lee Ryder claims he hasn’t yet been ruled out of next Saturday’s trip to Stamford, saying he’s ‘walking able’ and has almost two weeks to recover, however he believes our home clash with Wolves at the end of the month or our trip to West Ham in November are more likely return dates for Ritchie.
He’s been missed (we could’ve done with his drive and passion in that humiliating defeat at Leicester!) and will be itching to get back out there, but we have capable cover in Jetro Willems.
The Dutchman hasn’t always looked assured defensively, but he was brilliant at both ends of the pitch in that 1-0 win over Man Utd, doing a solid job at the back, linking up with Saint-Maximin effectively and playing a key part in Matty Longstaff’s goal with some impressive footwork and an intelligent assist.
That said, Ritchie’s energy and intensity is missed and, as the trip to Leicester proved, we are only one injury away from having no natural left wing-back.
Let’s hope he recovers from the operation quickly and is back in the squad for next Saturday’s trip to Chelsea.