Charlton AthleticSport

Jason Pearce ruled out as Charlton’s central defensive options become a concern

Jason Pearce is expected to be sidelined for up to two months after suffering a knee injury – leaving Charlton Athletic down to the bare bones in terms of natural central defensive options.

The Addicks club captain did not feature in the club’s friendly matches against Birmingham City and Southend United.

And the South London Press understands that Pearce faces between six to eight weeks out.

While it could have been worse news for the League One club, it further depletes their options in the middle of the backline.

Naby Sarr was released this summer and Tom Lockyer still has the option to leave for nothing – although there is a set timescale for that exit to take place.

Pearce is the only left-footed central defender at the club and the only fit senior specialist player in that position at the moment is Deji Oshilaja if Lockyer were to opt for a move away.

Experienced central midfielder Darren Pratley has been used at the back before.

Charlton are under a transfer embargo and have been unable to push through a contract for Adam Matthews, although the right-back did feature for the SE7 outfit in yesterday’s 3-2 friendly loss to Southend United.

They start their season with an EFL Trophy match at AFC Wimbledon next Tuesday and follow up on Saturday with an EFL Cup tie at Swindon Town. They will be without Conor Washington, Lockyer and Jonny Williams for the latter – with the trio all selected for international duty.

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