Pearce Progressing

Physio John Green is happy to report that Ian Pearce is moving forward as he continues his rehabilitation.

"Ian Pearce is progressing," says John, "he is up at the hydrotherapy pool and running on his patella tendon injury and hopefully, as we have done with Joe, we can move him on from partial weight bearing running on the water to dry land, with a view to him being fit in the new year."

John admits his injury is a tricky one to deal with and says: "A patella tendon injury is particularly difficult to treat; the most noticeable one recently has been Ronaldo.

"The main thing is we are desperately trying to avoid him having an operation because all the surgeons that we have spoken to say people generally don't respond well to having an operation there.

"This is because of the forces that go through it, so any weakening of the tendon is obviously a risk.

"We won't operate on it if we can help it - the specialist that Ian is seeing has indicated that the last thing we should do is have an operation as it would be a risk, and we are hopeful we can avoid that.

"We have done everything we have been told to do, and there will have to be a certain amount of settling down as regards the injury because tendon tissue takes around 100 days to mature fully.

"His strength is back now, though he still has some pain when he is pressing on it though apparently that can be a little bit of a red herring anyway.

"So hopefully when we begin the impact work and the running work he will progress as David James, Joe Cole, and Steve Lomas have done."

The news regarding injuries is generally good, with Joe also firmly on the comeback trail, and John says: "Joe is training this week as we predicted he would, despite all the press and publicity.

"We have had about 20 faxes and letters through from people trying to tell us how to do our job but there was never really a major problem.

"It was like with most long term injuries, someone has to acclimatise to training again on grass and putting football boots on.

"Where a foot is injury is concerned it is going to be especially sore and tender when you haven't been running for a long time.

"Once that training soreness was overcome he has been able to train pain-free."

John has received a certain amount of unsolicited advice about how to treat Joe, and he says: "We have had contact from quite a number of physios at other clubs who I certainly feel should be more concerned with their own injuries rather than mine.

"I don't think I would ever write or ring another physio and tell him what he should be doing with his own injuries."

As for Titi Camara, who played for an hour in the reserves' defeat at Fulham in midweek, he adds: "From an injury point of view there is no problem with Titi, it is just a case of getting match fitness.

"Shaun Byrne saw a specialist yesterday and he is going to start running now but he hasn't lost a lot of fitness.

"Steve Bywater is frustrated because he fractured his schaphoid - a bone in the wrist - and that will take some time to heal."