Curle taking extra care over McCormack's fitness

Alan McCormack
Alan McCormack

Midfielder Alan McCormack is edging closer to a return to first-team action but Saturday's league clash at Salford City might come a little too soon.

The 35-year-old has not been seen since he was taken off just a few minutes into the second-half at Crawley Town on Boxing Day.

He missed the wins over Stevenage and Burton, plus the draw with Cheltenham, and looks set to sit out again on Saturday with manager Keith Curle taking extra care over the fitness of his experienced midfielder.

"He's not far away from returning but not close enough yet," said Curle.

"We're mindful of the fact that, whenever Alan gets an injury, it's not just a case of getting himself fit.

"We know we have to treat him well and it'll probably take a little bit longer than what we would do with some players because we know the importance of not just getting Alan back but getting him back fit.

"That's what we need and we don't want one injury to lead to another injury so it might take two or three days longer than some people might expect.

"But we've got the best interests of Alan McCormack at heart because we want him playing for the next 21, 22 games and being available for us because we know what he adds to us."

The club are still waiting for a second opinion on the injuries suffered by Harry Smith and Shaun McWilliams, both of whom are expected to miss between two and three months.