Baffins Milton Rovers boss Steve Leigh admits PMC Stadium pitch contributed to a serious injury in Portsmouth Senior Cup win

George Way could be facing a long spell on the sidelines after suffering a freak injury during Baffins’ Portsmouth Senior Cup win against Paulsgrove in midweek.

Thursday, 23rd January 2020, 10:58 am
Updated Thursday, 23rd January 2020, 3:34 pm
Baffins manager Steve Leigh says the PMC Stadium pitch contributed to George Way's serious ankle injury.

Boss Steve Leigh fears he could have broken an ankle during the second half of Rovers’ 4-0 victory at the PMC Stadium on Wednesday.

Way landed awkwardly after going up for a header, with Leigh admitting a saturated playing surface contributed to the injury.

‘The pitch is so soft,’ he said. ‘When George landed, his ankle sunk five or six inches in the pitch - the ground couldn’t support it.

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‘George said he had an almighty crack and I’ve seen pictures of his ankle this morning. People say an ankle can swell to the size of a tennis ball - his is the size of a melon.

‘When pitches are like this, they are a danger to players.’

Baffins have had major drainage problems this season, and Wednesday’s game was only the second they have played at home since November 6.

They still have 12 Wessex League games - out of 19 - to play at the PMC Stadium.

Rovers are due to host Brockenhurst in the Wessex League Cup next Wednesday, but Leigh is already concerned that could be called off.

‘Even in the warm-up the pitch was cutting up,’ Leigh reported. ‘It’s been ripped to shreds now.

‘It’s no-one’s fault, our ground-staff are fantastic. Last season we had the best pitch in the league - we’re scratching our heads as to why this has happened.’

Leigh admitted Baffins turned in a ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ display during the victory over Paulsgrove.

‘At times some of our football was very, very good on a muddy surface,’ he remarked.

‘But against a better side we would have been punished in the first half.

‘They didn’t carve us open, but they had a lot of chances - avoidable chances - because our players didn’t do their jobs, because of our basic errors.

‘Out of possession, we need to be better. It’s about getting back to basics in terms of defending.

‘But I had two young lads (Brandon Miller and Sam Emeny) at centre half - one 18, one 19 - and they are still learning.

‘That’s the nice thing about this club - we’re not in a rush to get anywhere so I should have the time to teach these lads the game.’

Baffins travel to Christchurch this weekend aiming to end the Wessex Premier’s last remaining unbeaten home record.

The Dorset club have won five and drawn two at their Hurn Bridge HQ so far, and Leigh said: ‘It will be an extremely tough game. If we get anything it will be a brilliant result.’