Locke has “multiple” face fractures

Darren Locke

Darren Locke - Credit: Archant

St Albans City will be without Darren Locke after the centre-back suffered “multiple” fractures to the right side of his face on Tuesday at Arlesey.

Locke opened the scoring at the Armadillo Stadium but he had to be substituted on 38 minutes after he challenged for a header with Stuart Farrell and the two clashed heads.

City’s physio Zac Chandler gave him treatment on the side of the pitch before the decision was taken to bring on Ben Martin.

Secretary Steve Eames confirmed the extent of the injury on Wednesday morning, adding that Locke may require “specialist” surgery.

Straight after the game, joint manager James Gray said: “He’s had morphine and he’s in a lot of pain. He’s a brave lad; he’s put his head in and won the header but on the follow-through he’s caught his cheek on the player’s head.

“It’s unfortunate for Locke because he’s been doing really well for us and he kept Benny Martin out of the starting line-up tonight.

“It’s a blow for us but it’s something we’ll have to get over. We’re alright at [centre-back] but hopefully we’ll see him again this season.”

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Locke (@Lockey168) tweeted today that he is scheduled to see a specialist on Monday to see if surgery is needed.

His injury is the latest to City’s centre-back contingent which has seen Martin and Tom Ward miss time this season with hamstring and foot injuries respectively.

With Ward back to full fitness and Martin coming through the Arlesey game unscathed, Saints have three centre backs available for selection - the third being James Kaloczi.

“I knew Ben’s injury would only [keep him out] for a couple of games. We’ve managed to win those two games and he’s come back in tonight. He’s not had a reaction to his injury and he did well tonight,” said Gray.

In other injury news, Chris Watters is expected back in full training this week.