Norwich City’s injury curse is testing Neil Adams’ patience

Norwich City midfielder Wes Hoolahan damaged his ankle ligaments at Fulham. Picture by Paul Chestert

Norwich City midfielder Wes Hoolahan damaged his ankle ligaments at Fulham. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Neil Adams admits Norwich City's injury curse is testing his patience after midfielder Vadis Ofoe became the latest member of his squad set for a spell on the sidelines.

The Belgian international was ruled out for a 'number of weeks' after scans confirmed medial knee ligament damage suffered in the opening half of the 0-0 Championship draw at Sheffield Wednesday.

Wes Hoolahan is also on the casualty list at present with the likes of Jonny Howson, Gary Hooper and Ryan Bennett all missing chunks of the season, whilst Luciano Becchio broke his heel in a freak accident on loan at Rotherham.

Bennett is now back in light training following ankle surgery after his derby day injury at Portman Road, but the centre back will not be considered for Bolton's televised visit on to Carrow Road on Friday.

'The injuries are incredible, uncanny almost,' said Adams. 'If you see a player smashed in a tackle and it is an obvious one sometimes you can accept it. That is the game, but I look at Jonny Howson's injury in the summer and no-one even knew he had done his knee. We felt he was limping for a bit but he would be fine and he is then out for a number of weeks. It was a freak injury where he caught his studs in the turf. The same with Wes, at Fulham, with no-one near him he just goes over and it's a serious injury.

'Same on Saturday, five minutes into the game Vadis turns out of a tackle and plays on and we get hit with the news he is going to be out for a number of weeks.

'It is really frustrating as a manager, particularly, when it is three attacking players. Jonny is back with us now but to lose two what you would call number 10's in Wes and Vadis for the next few weeks is difficult to take when they are basically innocuous incidents.'

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City's medical team have yet to decide whether Ofoe requires surgery.

'It's not good, unfortunately,' said Adams. 'He's had a scan and seen a specialist and they're just deciding what course of action to take. He's going to be out of action for a number of weeks. It's a case now of does it require surgery? If it's a case it does then it will be longer, if it isn't then it will be sooner. That is a real shame because it was his first start for us in the league and the fact he played on is incredible when you look at what he has done.

'I think that just sums up the player himself. He was desperate to make an impression, to stay on and even playing with a damaged medial ligament. 'At half-time with those type of injuries they start to seize up and you could tell straight away he would not be able to carry on and the scan has backed that up.'

Gary O'Neil slotted into City's midfield at Hillsborough following the Belgian's exit and Adams was delighted with his impact.

'I thought he was excellent when he went on,' he said. 'Vadis goes off and we are not putting on a 16 or 17 year old but a lad who has earned promotions, who has played in play-off finals. He has been first class since he walked through the gates. I think people can see why we brought him in, not only his attitude but his ability. No doubt he has been desperate to play but when he got his chance he showed what he can do and he also has a great delivery. We saw his quality straight away.'