Fears Grow Over Crocked Fozzy

Last updated : 15 July 2003 By Rob Cooper
Nicky Forster
Forster may miss the start of the new season
Former Birmingham forward Forster is to seek specialist help in a bid to get full fitness back before the start of the new season, which is now less than one month away.

No-one feared that seventeen-goal hero Fozzy would miss the start of the campaign, however there are now growing distress signals coming from the Berkshire club. If the Royals were to be without their star man for the start of the campaign it would be a body blow to their pormotion hopes.

Speaking to the Reading Evening Post a downcast Forster admitted he is yet to win his battle against injury.

"It's still a bit sore, a bit niggly. It's been dragging on a bit now so I'm going to see a specialist this afternoon. We have to decide on a course of action. But I might even have an MRI scan to see what is inside the ankle.

"We expected it to be totally cured by now so it's just frustrating."

The news that Forster may not be fit for the new season is sure to alarm boss Alan Pardew. The Royals manager pinned the bulk of his attacking hopes on Fozzy who operated wonderfully in a 4-5-1 formation.

With Jamie Cureton now departed Pardew would be short of strikers with just youngsters Nathan Tyson, Bas Savage and Darius Henderson as well as Martin Butler, a player who has not fired on all cylinders since suffering a serious injury.

Pards, who has spent the summer scouring the market for a new centre-forward, will now step up his efforts so as not to be caught short when the August 9th kick-off comes around.

Forster suffered ankle ligament damage as Reading took on Wolves in the Play-Off semi-final first leg. The electric striker, who had already netted once, was on fire and looked odds on to rap up the tie in the first leg.

With the injury came Reading's downfall. Without their star man Andy Hughes, a makeshift forward, was unable to undo the Wolves defence, resulting in a heart-wrenching defeat.

Caterham-born marksman Forster had originally hoped to play in the Play-Off final if the Royals have made it to Cardiff. The final was sixteen days after he sustained the injury. Two months on and he is still not yet fit to play.

Reading travel to Brentford tonight for their first pre-season friendly. You can read a match preview by clicking here.

If you wish to travel to the game, ticket info is available if you click here.

A full pre-season fixture list can be found here.