City boss has no plans to retire yet

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Neil Wainwright is far from calling time on his playing career despite concerns over a serious knee injury.

The Lancaster City joint boss discovered on Monday that he had a partial tear in the lateral ligament in his left knee meaning he may have surgery for the first time in his near 17-year career.

Whether he goes under the knife or not, the former Morecambe winger is unlikely to play again this season but says he won’t be hanging up his boots just yet.

The 35-year-old said: “It’ll take a lot for me to stop playing.

“I think I’ll be playing until I’m 45!

“The knee didn’t feel too bad to be honest but then I got some bad news. I’m playing it by ear in terms of an operation because I’ve just got to see what the surgeon says.

“The rehab on any operation would be quite long but I’m out for the season either way I think.

“The funny thing at the moment is as a player-manager I’d rather not be playing anyway.

“The lads are doing well and it’s good that Michael (Stringfellow, joint boss) and I don’t feel the need to throw ourselves in.”

As disappointing as the news was Wainwright admitted he has more options post-football than he did in recent years.


He said: “It’s not as bad as it would have been two years ago when I didn’t know what I was going to do after football.

“I didn’t have the Lancaster City job and wasn’t doing the (community) coaching at Morecambe.

“So I guess there’s a silver lining in that respect.”

The Dolly Blues’ joint bosses had their players in for training on Saturday morning after their trip to Wakefield was called off due to the snow and freezing temperatures.

Wainwright said: “It was disappointing to see it called off because we’re going well at the moment and want the games to keep coming.

“We had a couple of knocks that will have got some extra rest but we’d definitely rather it had been on.

“We were ready for it though and the lads didn’t lose any fitness time.”

City are hopeful this Saturday’s game at Giant Axe against struggling Prescot Cables will beat the weather as the Dolly Blues look to continue a run that has seen them go unbeaten in five of their last six matches.

Wainwright said: “It all depends on if the temperature goes up, which it’s supposed to later this week.

“We trained on the pitch on Tuesday night but I think if a referee had been involved it wouldn’t have gone ahead.

“We arrived at 6.30 and it was hard in places and got noticeably worse over the next 45 minutes, but it could have been the time of day.

“Prescot are struggling but it’s all about who turns up on the day.

“If we’re not putting it in I’m sure they can get something out of the game but I know we’ve got a good chance in any game we play in.”

Billy McKenna and Jake Simpson are set to miss the game through injury, the former is in light training after an abdominal muscle injury and Simpson is struggling with a shin problem.