SUNDERLAND’S young Irish defender John Egan is back at the club to begin his rehabilitation following a horror leg break on Tuesday.
The 20-year-old, who had been on loan at Bradford City, is believed to have broken both the fibula and tibia of his right leg, although Sunderland could not confirm the full extent of his injury.
Egan landed awkwardly after 13 minutes of the League Two side’s match with Plymouth Argyle at Valley Parade and it immediately became clear he was in trouble.
Many of Bradford’s players were visibly upset by their team-mate’s screams as medical staff attended to him before being he was taken to hospital.
Egan received oxygen on the pitch while the game was delayed by six minutes before he was taken off the field on a stretcher.
Bradford manager Phil Parkinson rushed to Egan’s bedside after the match and said: “My thoughts are firmly with John. It’s too early to speculate what he has done, but it didn’t look good.”
Sunderland’s medical staff will find out over the next 48 hours exactly how long the centre-half will be sidelined and whether an operation is required.
However, if he has suffered a double leg fracture then the possibility of him playing again this season at any level is highly unlikely.
Egan joined Sunderland as a trainee, but had yet to make a first-team appearance.
The Cork man moved to Bradford at the start of this month and had only managed three games before Tuesday night.
A Sunderland spokesperson last night told The Journal it was too early for the club’s medical staff, who examined the player for the fist time yesterday afternoon, to form a proper and complete diagnosis of the injury.
It would be late in the week before they could name a possible comeback date.
Egan is highly rated at the Stadium of Light and it was he who asked Black Cats boss Martin O’Neill to go out on loan until January to get some competitive football.
Egan enjoyed spells on loan with Championship side Crystal Palace and League One Sheffield United last season.