Bolton Wanderers top scorer Jermaine Beckford still not ready to return
JERMAINE Beckford remains tantalisingly out of reach for Wanderers after struggling to overcome his hamstring injury in time to face Watford.
Dougie Freedman admits he will have to wait until next week to assess the fitness of his top scorer, who has not featured since January 11 when he limped out of a 1-1 draw with Nottingham Forest.
Beckford, who has eight goals in all competitions, has been sorely missed. But Freedman is keeping his fingers crossed for better news in the build up to next weekend’s derby clash with Blackburn Rovers.
“Jermaine is struggling along with his fitness really,” he said. “Every time he pushes the muscle it seems to push him back two or three days.
“I keep saying ‘next week, next week’ because that’s what I’m being told but when he trains on the Wednesday it sets him back a bit, or rather the muscle soreness does.
“So my answer right now is the same as it was seven days ago and it will be next Thursday that I give you another answer.
“I need him to train properly on a Thursday or else otherwise he can’t play. So Wednesday will be the crucial game for him.”
In potentially better news, Andre Moritz’s spell on the sidelines looks like being considerably shorter than first feared.
The Brazilian playmaker is being given every chance to prove he has overcome a hamstring problem picked up in the 1-0 defeat against Burnley.
It was initially suggested that Moritz could miss several weeks when he limped off only 12 minutes after coming on as a substitute against the Clarets.
But Freedman admitted there was an outside chance he could be involved at the Reebok tomorrow.
“He trained yesterday but didn’t today because he was a little bit sore,” Freedman revealed. “He might train again Friday.
“It was more of a bang rather than a muscle injury but I’m going to given him a little bit longer so see how he goes.”