Liam Coyle is back and ready to help Accrington Stanley escape the relegation places, starting with tomorrow’s Good Friday home clash with Port Vale.
The midfielder had made 40 appearances this season before he fractured his cheekbone in four places in a clash with Bolton Wanderers keeper James Trafford in the semi-final of the Papa Johns Trophy on 22nd February.
The 23-year-old needed an operation and has to wear a special mask now while playing to protect his cheekbone from further injury.
“It’s been very frustrating to be not playing as I had played most of the games this season,” said Coyle.
“The results hadn’t gone our way but I really enjoyed being a part of the team and playing the games so it was a big miss having to watch on the television or in the stands.
“I was gutted not to be out there, able to help the team, but I am glad I am back fit and available for selection.”
He admitted he can’t remember a lot about the 57th minute clash where Trafford and Coyle clashed out of the area.
“I remember running for the ball and that’s it. The next thing I remember is waking up in hospital, there are a good few hours missing.
“Once the tests were done, like the brain tests, and I knew it was just broken bones I knew it wasn’t the end of the world.
“People say would you go in for that challenge again and I say course I would as I thought I was going to head it past him and score!
“My cheekbone was fractured in four places so it was shattered. I had surgery and two plates put in and that was painful for a good few weeks.
“I was on a liquid diet at first but gradually ate more and now I am back to normal and I need to get the weight back on.
“I wanted to play as soon as possible so I have worked my hardest to get back fit.
“I can’t wait to play again whenever called upon to try and keep this team in the league.”
He has been getting used to his specially designed mask.
“I will wear the mask until the end of the season. I got it made for me, it fits my face quite well and gives me a bit of protection.
“I wear it for training to get used to how it feels. It does the job and I am buzzing to be back.”
He knows tomorrow’s clash with Port Vale and then Monday’s trip to Sheffield Wednesday are huge in the relegation fight.
“They are massive, we need to get as many points as we can from these eight games and see where it takes us.
“Tomorrow, we really need the home win to set us on our way and give us that bit of confidence to kick on in the other games.
“We all want to keep this team in League One. There are some big characters and great players here and we like to think if we can stay fit, gel together and get that slice of luck, nick a scrappy goal and get ahead in one of these games, it will be massive.
“It will give us the confidence to kick on and believe in each other to go and get more points in the league and stay in the league.
“It would mean everything to stay in League One, no one wants to get relegated, it will be one of the worst feelings. We have to stick together and fight.”
The full pre-match interview with Liam Coyle is available to watch on the club's official YouTube channel, CLICK HERE to find out more!