Rotherham United are hoping injured duo can benefit from lay-off

ROTHERHAM UNITED manager Paul Warne is hopeful that defenders Michael Ihiekwe and Clark Robertson could now feature if the EFL season gets underway in late spring or summer.

The enforced suspension of games until April 30 at the earliest will mean that the duo – who had been expected to miss the rest of the regular season – may now be involved.

Warne confirmed that influential centre-half Ihiekwe will not have to undergo knee surgery, while the season may now also not be over for Robertson, who has been sidelined with foot and groin injuries.

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Ihiekwe missed the Millers’ last game, a 3-1 defeat at Rochdale, while Robertson has been out of action since the 4-0 win over Peterborough United in late December.

Rotherham's Michael Ihiekwe.

Warne said: “He (Ihiekwe) went and saw a specialist in London (on Wednesday) and he convinced Iky through a long chat that he does not need the operation and has enough fibres in his knee to withstand.

“It will take eight to 10 weeks rehabilitation and potentially I am hopeful that Iky will be available by the time we kick a ball again. He is walking pain-free, which is a really positive thing and I am pleased on that.

“Robbo is still resting his broken foot. But he has another scan in three to four weeks and if he gets the all-clear from that, he could pick up his training as well.

“Potentially, in four, five or six weeks time, we will be closer to having a lot of our defenders back.”

Warne has confirmed that back-up goalkeeper Lewis Price and Freddie Ladapo are currently self-isolating away from the club as a precaution amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The pair contacted the club and said they had developed symptoms relating to advice on COVID-19 and have been kept away from the club’s training ground.

Warne added: “Lewis Price’s brother has got coronavirus and he had spent some time with him. He’s got symptoms and is now self-isolating for two weeks.

“Last Friday, before we got the news that the game is off, Freddie phoned up and had a fever, which is obviously a sign. So he is self-isolating for a week. So we won’t see him for a bit.

“Yesterday, Dan Barlaser got called back from Newcastle as they did not want him to train and wanted him to self-isolate, so that is out of my hands as well.

“They are the only concerns so far.”