Somma faces lengthy lay-off due to cruciate injury woe

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DAVIDE SOMMA is facing a lengthy lay-off after the Leeds United striker revealed he had torn his cruciate ligament.

The South African international underwent a scan earlier this week after being unable to join up with his team-mates on United’s mini-tour of Scotland due to an injury sustained in training.

Last night, Somma announced the results of the scan to his followers on the social networking site, Twitter: “Got scan back. Torn my ACL, am going to be out for five to six months.”

However, following that announcement, manager Simon Grayson moved to clarify the situation and revealed that the injury may not be as serious as the distraught Somma first feared.

The United chief told the Yorkshire Post: “Contrary to what has been said on Twitter, it (the injury) is not confirmed and the time-scale could also be very misleading.

“We will know more about Davide’s injury and the scan results over the next few days, at which time I will be in a better position to comment on the full diagnosis.”

The news that Somma is now facing a likely extended lay-off is a big blow for Leeds with the striker having enjoyed an impressive first season at Elland Road.

Despite largely being used from the bench, the 25-year-old netted 12 goals as Grayson’s side just missed out on a place in the Championship play-offs.

With Luciano Becchio also having not travelled to Scotland as the Argentinian continues his rehab from surgery on the hamstring that underwent surgery last April, Leeds are likely to turn to Ross McCormack and Billy Paynter today when they take on Motherwell in a friendly.

Meanwhile, United have confirmed that the planned moving of away fans at Elland Road this season will be delayed by at least two weeks.

Hull City and Middlesbrough are the first two visitors in the Championship and their supporters were expected to be housed in the West Stand.

However, with Leeds still waiting for a safety certificate and the re-building work on the East Stand also not due to be finished in time for the kick-off, the club have announced that the previous arrangements that saw away supporters seated in the South East corner and half of the South Stand will remain in place for the visit of Boro and the Tigers on August 13 and 16 respectively.

A club spokesman said: “The club is awaiting approval from the Safety Team with regards to the new visiting fans arrangements in the West Stand.

“While we anticipate no issues, the approval won’t be in place in time for the date that tickets go on sale.

“Therefore, for the first two home games, the away fans will be located in the South East corner with the option of a segment in the South Stand.”

In the Carling Cup tie against Bradford City on August 9, away fans were always going to be housed in the South Stand and, subject to demand, South East corner.

Carlton Cole’s transfer from West Ham to Stoke appeared to have fallen through last night.

The Potters had agreed a fee for the 27-year-old striker, but the Hammers have now revealed Cole would be staying put.

The reason as to why the deal has collapsed is not known, although West Ham suggested the England international was unable to agree personal terms.