LIAM Manning has confirmed that teenage defender George Franklin has suffered an ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury.

The 19-year-old made his Oxford United debut at right back in this month’s 3-1 win at Northampton Town in the EFL Trophy.

After putting in a promising display at Sixfields, he is unfortunately set to be out of action for a substantial period of time.

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U’s head coach Manning said the club will support Franklin during his recovery from an injury which has hit the likes of former U’s midfielder Alex Gorrin, plus Roy Keane, Alan Shearer and Ruud van Nistelrooy over the years.

Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk suffered an ACL injury and missed the majority of the 2020/21 season.

“George unfortunately is going to be out for a long time, he’s suffered a nasty one,” said Manning.

“I was really pleased with how he performed and was gutted for him.

“He’s been through it before and had an injury at the back end of last year, so it’s about him staying tough and having a strong support network around him, which we’ll provide and make sure we do what’s right by him.”

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