US Portsmouth not rushing injury return of top scorer James Franklyn as Wessex League Division 1 title race hots up

US Portsmouth will manage top scorer James Franklyn’s injury return in the right way.

Friday, 7th February 2020, 1:16 pm
Updated Friday, 7th February 2020, 1:52 pm
James Franklyn. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (231119-6)

That's the message from manager Glenn Turnbull with the forward facing a few weeks on the sideline with an ankle ligament injury.

Franklyn, who has netted 21 times in all competitions this season, was stretchered off soon after grabbing the winner in the 1-0 win over 10-man East Cowes Victoria last weekend.

The US Portsmouth striker is facing an initial two weeks out, but he is determined to be back for his side’s push for the title.

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Turnbull’s troops are a point clear at the top and he knows Franklyn will be eager to return as quickly as possible.

But the USP boss, whose team host Andover Town on Saturday, is not going to rush back the prolific forward.

‘We’re looking at being without James for two or three weeks,’ revealed Turnbull.

‘It was just a late tackle.

‘He’s been to hospital and found out he’s got ligament damage in his ankle.

‘We’ve got Harry Bedford who has played in that position for Petersfield.

‘Whilst we’ve got our top scorer missing, we’ve got plenty of quality to come in behind him.

‘It just depends how long he’s out for.

‘Franko is desperate to get back.

‘He is hoping to be back for the game against Ringwood later this month, but we might have to manage him rather than him telling us.

‘We want him back as quickly as possible but, equally, we want him available for the run-in.

‘If it means I miss him for two weeks rather than 10, then I’d rather do that.’

Both Tom Cain (broken nose) and Cameron Quirke were forced off by half time in the clash with East Cowes.

However, Turnbull is optimistic the duo will be available when Andover come to visit as USP look to secure a win that would keep them top.

‘We had Tom Cain taken off with a broken nose at half time,’

‘Cameron Quirke was then taken off with a head injury where he got elbowed.

‘But both Cameron and Caino should be fit to face Andover.’