Bircham left stunned by Tudors' early injury crisis

Hemel Hempstead Town face the prospect of having up to a dozen players unavailable for their first home league game of the season this weekend

Wednesday, 18th August 2021, 11:53 am
Updated Wednesday, 18th August 2021, 11:54 am
Hemel Hempstead Town boss Lee Bircham

“I have never known anything like it”.

That was manager Lee Bircham’s reaction when asked about the early injury crisis at Hemel Hempstead Town.

Bircham revealed the Tudors went into last weekend’s Vanarama National League South opener at Maidstone United with eight players missing and now they are even more understrength for a home clash with Braintree Town this Saturday after new signing Dejon Noel-Williams suffered a hamstring injury in the warm-up and influential midfielder Samir Carruthers then had to be withdrawn for the same reason during the first half of the 4-2 defeat.

It’s an injury list that has left Bircham almost speechless and he knows the Tudors will have to try to draft some more bodies in before they take to the field at Vauxhall Road this weekend.

“I have never known anything like it,” the Hemel boss said.

“It’s not like we have been running up and down hills or anything like that, it’s just one of those things.

“We keep picking up these injuries but none of them are niggles, they’re all three or four weekers and they are all happening in the same area.

“There’s not a lot you can do. You hope it evens itself over the course of the season and we are just getting them all out of the way now.

“We had eight missing anyway and one suspended and then our new striker did his hamstring and then within 20 minutes our best player Samir Carruthers had a shot at goal and did his hamstring.

“It’s not like it was anything underlying, it just happened and it’s one of those things.

“We are then playing a game against one of the favourites for the league with a centre-half and a right-back in central midfield and we had to change our shape. It’s tough.

“We’re going to have to get some players in but it’s going to be hard to do that at this early stage of the season. But we have got to get some in because, at the moment, we are looking at having 12 players unavailable for this weekend.

“I am not one to make excuses and you always hear managers bemoaning injuries but they are probably talking about two or three.

“We are talking about 12 and six or seven of those would start for us.

“We will do what we can and we just have to hope we don’t get anymore.”