Starting to Hurt

INJURIES continued to plague Argyle during their 2-1 defeat to Cambridge United, as manager Derek Adams continues to have to make do without a number of key players.

A patched-up and thinly-spread Argyle squad ensured a narrow and painful loss to the visiting U’s, as Gregg Wylde cancelled out Ben Williamson’s opener, only to see Peter Hartley’s unfortunate slip allow Luke Berry to net a 20-yard winner.

The Pilgrims have only been able to record one victory in their last seven games, and the reason for their slump in form is as clear as day to the boss. 

“The reason is that we were without a lot of important players,” said Derek. “We’ve got a tight squad, and we can’t do without the players we’re missing. 

“We’re missing five players today who are regulars in the team; when you have that out at this level, it becomes very difficult. That is not an excuse: that is reality. 

“I think that any team in this division, if they are missing their second-highest goal-scorer and most creative player in Graham Carey, Reuben Reid, Hiram Boateng, and Luke McCormick, they’re going to find it difficult.” 

Despite an extended break to try and bring players back into the fold, only Peter Hartley was able to return against Cambridge, and Adams thinks the situation is unlikely to change by the time they visit Hartlepool next weekend, with the possible exception of McCormick, who is battling a fresh injury. 

"He trained on Thursday,” Derek said, on the subject of his goalkeeper. “He had recovered from his groin injury, and then he picked up a finger (injury) last week. He’s close to a return, yes. 

“We’re obviously disappointed, and a number of them we’re not going to see until the new year, which is a huge disappointment. We’d rather that they were back quicker than that. I don’t see any difference from the 18 than the 18 that will go to Hartlepool next week.

 “I find it quite alarming that we’re in this situation, but it’s difficult because we’ve been on such a good run. We are still high up in the league, but we’ve to do without a number of top players.

 “We’ve got to get on with it. We’re doing that, the players are doing that, but it’s frustrating that we’ve got a lot of important players out.”