Time on the sidelines for Preston North End winger Billy Bodin after knee surgery

Billy Bodin has hit another roadblock in his attempt to get a consistent run of games in the Preston North End side.

By Dave Seddon
Saturday, 28th November 2020, 8:00 am
Updated Saturday, 28th November 2020, 8:22 am

The 28-year-old winger recently had minor knee surgery after picking up an injury in training.

Although he should be back after Christmas, it is more time on the sidelines for a player who is approaching the third anniversary of arriving at Deepdale.

PNE manager Alex Neil said: “Billy had a procedure on his knee, that is why he has been missing and will be missing for the foreseeable.

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Preston North End's Billy Bodin

“He could feel a looseness in it, we got it investigated to see if there was anything which needed doing and tidying up.

“They did need to fix it as it wasn’t going to resolve itself.”

Neil explained his use of the word ‘foreseeable’ was down to the busy nature of the fixture list.

Although it won’t be too long of an absence in terms of time, there are plenty of games squeezed in between now and the other side of Christmas.

Bodin hasn’t had much luck with injuries in the past couple of years.

He ruptured his cruciate ligament a few days before the start of the 2018/19 season.

That kept him out for the entire campaign.

Last season, Bodin needed surgery on his Achilles tendon which kept him out for a few weeks ahead of the first lockdown.

He returned to feature as a substitute three times in the restart games.

In September, Bodin started the opening game of the season against Swansea.

His only other appearance was a start in the Carabao Cup defeat to Brighton.

He was last on the bench at Brentford in October.

Neil said: “The difficulty with Billy is that we’ve only tended to get one or two games out of him at a time before he’s pulled a calf muscle, hurt his knee or pulled a quad.

“When I say someone is going to be out for a little while at the moment, it might only mean a couple of weeks.

“But in that time you could miss four or five games and a few weeks more means a lot more games missed.”

Bodin signed for North End from Bristol Rovers in a £500,000 move in January 2018.

Missing a full season and being in-and-out of the team has seen him limited to 41 appearances.

He’s out of contract next summer so will need a run of games when he does get fit to try and win a new deal.

On the injury front, Josh Harrop has been absent from the squad for the last two games having scored in a bounce game last week.

Neil said: “Josh had an injection not too long ago and has had a bit of an adverse reaction.”