Bentley: We’re nearly down to the bare bones

Jim Bentley.
Jim Bentley.
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Jim Bentley believes his squad is nearly down to the bare bones after seeing Chris McCready ruled out for up to three months with a broken collarbone.

The experienced defender joins Jack Redshaw as a long-term absentee with the Shrimps boss worried another injury would leave him stretched for numbers.

Speaking ahead of the trip to Southend on Saturday, he said: “Anyone would feel it if you lost your most experienced defender but we are quite light in that department anyway and now he’s going to be out for a few months.

“We’re right on the borderline of being down to bare bones.

“At the moment we can get a team and a bench together but if we get one or two more injuries we’ll be right into the kids of the squad.

“We’re going to be a little bit depleted but the lads who are in there are doing quite well at the moment and hopefully we can continue to do well and fingers crossed, touch wood and whatever else crossed, we don’t pick up anymore.”

Bentley’s hands are tied when it comes to bringing in reinforcements meaning he could soon be forced to turn to some of the more inexperienced members of his squad.

He said: “As a manager you always want a little bit more because these situations throw themselves up, as it did at the end of last season.

“It opens the door for the likes of Chris Doyle to come in but you’ve got to be careful with young lads that you don’t flog them straight away and throw them in at the deep end.

“You’ve got to ease them in like we did with Ryan Williams, Jack Redshaw and Jordan Burrow and what we’ve been doing a little bit this season with Alex Kenyon and Jack Sampson.

“You shouldn’t expect too much too soon from your younger lads.

“We’re a little depleted at the moment, certainly in the back line and I’d like to bring someone but it’s not possible at the moment.”

After missing training earlier in the week, Andy Parrish, Ryan Williams and Kevin Ellison should all feature at Southend after hamstring, thigh and back problems respectively.

McCready was expected to leave hospital on Thursday after an operation on his collarbone on Wednesday.

Bentley said: “He’s (McCready) been in since Saturday and is in a lot of pain as you can imagine after a clean snap of his collarbone that was nearly pointing up through his skin.

“It’s a bad one for him and a bad one for us.

“He hasn’t much luck recently with regards to his ankle operation, having a little breakdown and then his collarbone going as well.

“But you can’t do anything about that, it’s what happens, you can try and prevent muscular injuries but impact injuries and the bone injuries like Chris and Jack have had you can’t really affect that, it’s just one of those things that happens in football and unfortunately now we’ve got another long-term injury on our hands.”