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Telford facing defensive crisis ahead of Banbury clash

Kevin Wilkin has revealed his frustration with AFC Telford United facing a centre-half crisis for tomorrow’s Banbury clash.

Jordan Piggott (5) (AFC Telford United Defender) finding space to get forward to get a shot away.
Jordan Piggott (5) (AFC Telford United Defender) finding space to get forward to get a shot away.

The Bucks have three first-team players capable of playing in the heart of defence all injured and another suspended, meaning they have no recognised available centre-backs.

Boss Wilkin, who has lost all his league games in charge since taking over the side bottom of the pile in National League North, drafted would-be targets into training last night in a desperate bid to bolster the ranks.

Captain Matty Brown (groin and illness) and Jordan Piggott (knee) are two defenders sidelined. Midfielder Liam Nolan has previously dropped in but is still missing with a muscle injury, while Harry Flowers is serving his fifth suspension of the season meaning he misses out tomorrow, leaving the boss irked.

Wilkin said: “In management I’ve never experienced an injury situation anywhere near as bad as this.

“Equally, I’ve never experienced such a poor disciplinary record, I believe. At Brackley we won the fair play award and complimented that with being consistent in the league.

“You could point the finger at why we’ve got such a poor disciplinary record, I think our record here in two months is equal to something like six years at Brackley. All these totting up of yellows stack up.

“You look at it and I think these are some answers why we’ve found ourselves in such a poor situation. I’ve got to change that, how quickly I can change it remains to be seen.”

He added of the defence: “We’re really stretched, there’s four players who can play centre-half, to lose all four in one for different reasons...you can’t do anything about illness, injuries happens, but the suspension is thoroughly unavoidable, if you want it to be.

“We had a couple of lads in training and we might have to do something potentially in the short-term.

“I’m trying to find the right player to fit in the group, sometimes you just have to take somebody in and take a chance. We have a couple of interesting players working with us.”

Telford have also been struck by a hammerblow with the news last season’s top scorer Jason Oswell’s miserable luck with injury continues.

Oswell will miss a number of months as he requires surgery on a badly dislocated shoulder sustained in his recent to action at King’s Langley in the FA Trophy.

It comes on the back of around four months out with a calf injury to begin the season.

Brendon Daniels also misses out tomorrow as he begins a three-match suspension for the straight red card at the end of the recent Kidderminster defeat.

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