Sheffield United: Concerns about midfielder prompt second opinion

John Fleck, the Sheffield United midfielder, could be sent for more tests on the injury which will rule him out of Monday’s visit to Wigan Athletic after coaching staff expressed fears about how it is healing.
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Having already missed games against Rotherham and Cardiff City before the World Cup break, Fleck was also absent when Paul Heckingbottom’s side marked its return to action by beating Huddersfield Town last weekend.

The United manager used his latest media briefing to confirm that Fleck, who was diagnosed with a fractured leg earlier this season, is fit enough in a cardiovascular sense to take part at the DW Stadium. But after receiving a blow to the limb he damaged during the meeting with Matt Taylor’s team, Heckingbottom is concerned by the fact the Scotland international is still reporting discomfort in that area.

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“John is still sore from that bang he took,” he said. “He’s fine otherwise. But whenever he gets caught there, with the swelling being more than we thought, he feels it. So we’re going to have to get another opinion on it, to see if we need an intervention.”

Losing Fleck for another prolonged period would represent a set-back to United’s hopes of addressing the fitness issues which, despite being second in the Championship table, have blighted their season so far. With his contract set to expire at the end of the campaign, the 31-year-old will also be keen to get back out on the pitch as quickly as possible in order to press his claims for a new deal or extension.

Wigan, who are 22nd, will be contesting their first home match since appointing Kolo Toure.