IRISH LEAGUE: Gary Hamilton gutted for Glenavon youngster James Singleton

Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton

Glenavon boss Gary Hamilton admits it’s been a difficult week for his club following the sickening injury to young James Singleton.

The 20-year-old will be out for the rest of the season after breaking his leg playing for Northern Ireland in an Under-21 European qualifier against Macedonia at Mourneview Park.

Singleton had surgery on Thursday, which according to his manager “went well”. But there was no hiding the disappointment as Hamilton attempts to prepare his squad for a testing Danske Bank Premiership home outing with Ballymena United.

“James’ injury puts everything into perspective,” said a clearly upset Hamilton. “His injury is not only a massive blow to the lad himself, but also to Glenavon Football Club.

“He has done fantastically well for us – and is one of my first names on the team sheet. After playing at full-back for most of last season, James reverted to his accustomed centre of midfield role in which he as performed so well in the current campaign. He is not only a ball winner, but he pops up with vital goals.

“He was one of the best players on the pitch for Northern Ireland before his injury.

“I’ve been to see him every day in hospital. One thing is for sure, we’ll do everything to get James back to full fitness – back to the form that made him a target for cross channel clubs.

“To be honest we haven’t thought much of the Ballymena game,” he added. “But we’ll be professional. We’ll get our heads around it – and we’ll be out for win it for James.”