Scowcroft heading for extended injury lay-off

WORRYING TIMES: James Scowcroft
WORRYING TIMES: James Scowcroft
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JAMES Scowcroft ruled himself out until at least the beginning of the New Year with ‘the worst injury of his career’, and admitted it could even force him into retirement.

But the 35-year-old – who signed for Bury Town at the start of last season – also revealed he is determined to overcome the groin problem and return to action for the Blues.

And the former Ipswich Town, Leicester City and Crystal Palace player, who is enjoying a blossoming media career, hopes the innocuous-looking fall against Cambridge United will not be his last action on a football pitch in a playing capacity.

“There is that doubt in the back of my mind,” he said when questioned about retirement. “I would like to come back, but at 35 you have to work harder to get back and physically fit, and I haven’t played a competitive game since April.

“I’ll have to cross that bridge and make that decision when it comes to it.

“I have missed playing – it’s been hard watching from the stands, but I’ve kept myself busy and doing quite a lot of media work.

“I’ve also helped out coaching when Wilks (boss Richard Wilkins) wasn’t there, which I loved.

“I won’t walk away from football.”

Scowcroft – who scored eight goals from midfield last season after being converted from the forward role he played during his professional career – considered during the summer whether or not to continue his career, but after agreeing a new pay-as-you-play deal with Bury he returned to the side in pre-season with renewed vigour.

But when chasing a lost cause against Cambridge in August, he took a tumble in front of the dugouts and immediately limped off before being diagnosed with a groin injury.

The Stanton-based player added: “I knew when I did it that it was serious, but it’s dragged on and it’s proved to be the worst injury I’ve ever had – one of the groin muscles actually came away from the bone.

“I’ve got to the point where I’m still struggling with it. Although it’s heeled, it is not in a decent condition to get back playing football.

“Even in the New Year there are no guarantees it’s going to be right – I’ll just have to be patient.”

Meanwhile, long-term absentee Callum Kearns – who has not played since October 2010 – is between four and six weeks away from returning to playing.

The midfielder is now taking a full part in training.