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Thursday, 27 November 2014

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Chris Chantler needs time for ankle damage to heal - Carlisle Utd boss

Greg Abbott today insisted that Carlisle United’s approach to Chris Chantler’s ankle injury will save the defender’s season.

Chris Chantler photo
Chris Chantler

The left-back has missed the last two games as he battles a persistent ligament problem.

It is so far unclear whether Chantler will be able to return to the side for this weekend’s home clash with Stevenage. But manager Abbott is adamant that the former Manchester City player will be back soon – providing the Blues do not rush him into action too early.

The United boss said: “Chris will be fine, he just needs a bit of time.

“If we keep playing him, he runs the risk of getting a long-term injury that sees him out for the rest of the season.”

Chantler’s absence has seen Matty Robson move back to the defence and he will be favourite to continue in the position this Saturday.

Abbott has spoken of his frustration at losing Chantler’s services, claiming the versatile 22-year-old has been one of Carlisle’s best players this season.

But he added: “We are going to let it heal. He wants to play, and he’s not that far away, but there’s a ligament that’s slightly torn in his ankle.

“Other ligaments are protecting it. Dolly [physio Neil Dalton] is conscious that one bad blow on it now, after the two he has had, and that would be the end of it.

“The last thing we need is to be without Chris. He has been superb.”

Robson’s positional switch has opened the door for a return to the side for Andy Welsh, the left-winger having started United’s last two games against Scunthorpe and Tranmere.

His return to favour has been timely for Abbott, who says he needs all his players at his disposal for a busy period of fixtures.

“We are going to get prepared for some long trips, midweek games, important games, coming into the last third of season,” he added.

“We need everybody available. It’s vital we don’t take silly chances and risks with players who are valuable to the team.”

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