Sympathy for Portsmouth’s Brandon Haunstrup after ‘innocuous’ injury ruled him out of Sunderland call-up

Kenny Jackett spoke of his sympathy for Brandon Haunstrup after his ‘innocuous’ injury ruled him out of a Stadium of Light call-up.

Thursday, 16th May 2019, 6:30 am

The Waterlooville ace is sidelined for eight weeks after suffering knee ligament damage in training.

With Lee Brown (Achilles) and Dion Donohue (groin) both absent for Saturday’s League One play-off semi-final first leg at Sunderland, Haunstrup would have been in line to make a first appearance since January.

As a result, Anton Walkes was forced to deputise at left-back in the 1-0 defeat.

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Brandon Haunstrup. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett admitted he expected Haunstrup would be fine to feature against the Black Cats and was surprised he left the Blues’ Roko base wearing a brace.

The 22-year-old will now spend the the summer in recovery – meaning he will be unavailable for tonight’s return clash against Sunderland.

Blues boss Jackett said: ‘It was an innocuous situation and when he left training I really thought he would be okay in a day or two.

‘Then my physio tells me he’s going to be out for eight weeks, which is frustrating because seeing the incident it just seems very innocuous.

‘Even when he left in a brace then I thought it was still a little bit dramatic for what happened.

‘It just shows internally he’s obviously shaken it up. Hopefully he’s not too far into pre-season before he can come back.

‘If you’re looking at an eight-week period then him and Jack Whatmough can get to know each other a bit better.

‘Brandon should be okay mid-July and that is something.

‘He would have been disappointed (not to have played at Sunderland). If you look at Sunderland, we’ve got three left-backs injured.

‘That’s okay, though, we can't moan about injuries this season and haven’t been overburdened by unavailable players.’

Haunstrup has made 12 appearances this term – but only five have been in the league.

He’s been behind first-choice left-back Lee Brown in the pecking order, while the departing Dion Donohue has also featured in the role.

Jackett added: ‘It’s been a tough call for Brandon in terms of Lee Brown.

‘He had a mix of games last season when Donohue played quite a lot at left-back then the year before that he was behind Enda Stevens.’