Charlton boss Lee Bowyer talks about the extent of Jonathan Leko’s injury and a tough few weeks for Ben Purrington


Jonathan Leko is set to be the latest addition to Charlton’s lengthy injury list.

The West Brom loanee was withdrawn early on during the draw at QPR and is set to return to The Hawthorns for treatment.

“The physio has just said to me that it’s a knee injury and it doesn’t look good,” added Bowyer, after Leko was spotted leaving the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium in a knee brace.

“He’ll go back home now. He’ll have a scan and in two or three days, with Christmas coming, we’ll know. It doesn’t look like it’s a very good injury. Another knee one. Unfortunately, we can’t control that. The only good thing is that January is coming. We need to bring some bodies in. We have to because these lads can’t keep doing what they’re doing. They’re running through brick walls every week. They need some help, that’s the reality of it.”

Bowyer had already made two substitutions before the interval during the trip to west London, but says the swap of Ben Purrington for Jason Pearce was purely tactical.

“We looked very vulnerable at the back,” Bowyer admitted.

“They nearly went through the centre of us two or three times. Ben Purrington didn’t have a good start. He put their striker through one-on-one with the keeper, he had the ball three or four times and kept giving it away. He looked nervous and he’s looked like that for a little while now, Ben.

“I needed my captain on to sort things out defensively. That’s what he did. Once he did that, I thought we controlled large parts of the game. I thought we were the better side, we created a lot of chances. That’s part of my job to make decisions like that. Is it harsh to make decisions like that, to bring someone off before half-time? Of course, it is. But my job is to win games and put out the best side I can. I recognised that it wasn’t the case and I changed it.

“Everyone has these periods in their career. It’s nothing against Ben. It’s nothing personal. We’ll help him through it as staff. He will come through it.”


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