Aine O'Gorman a major doubt for World Cup qualifier in the NetherlandsWed, Nov 01 2017
Áine O'Gorman is a major doubt for the Republic of Ireland's World Cup qualifier with the Netherlands at the end of the month as she continues to recover from medial ligament damage.
The UCD Waves striker has already been ruled out of this weekend's FAI Cup final against Cork City after sustaining the injury during Ireland's 2-0 win over Northern Ireland in Lurgan in September.
And she faces a race against time to recover in time for the clash with the European champions in Nijmegen on November 28th – a game that will have a major bearing on both sides' chances of qualification.
“I’m out six weeks [so far] now,” O'Gorman told extratime.ie.
“I’d say I won’t be back for another four weeks now. I’m just taking it day by day and seeing how I get on.”
Ireland have collected two wins from two away games so far against Northern Ireland and Slovakia, but the Netherlands, who beat top seeds Norway in their only game, represent a sterner challenge.
Sunderland striker Steph Roche also faces a race against time to return to fitness after she sustained a broken leg in the same match in Lurgan.
The fact that a considerable number of the Ireland squad will have no competitive fixtures between Sunday and the game in the Netherlands is an added complication.
Manager Colin Bell is likely to stage some home-based training sessions to keep the Women's National League players ticking over, but they'll also need to be creative.
For O'Gorman, it means that even if she does regain fitness in time to be selected, she won't have any opportunity to regain match sharpess.
“Some of the girls are going to have to go looking and see if they can get decent training with the boys’ teams.
“I’m just going to be focused on my rehab and getting my eating right and hopefully be able to go out and do a bit of training with the ball.
“Between now and then, there’ll probably be home-based training sessions, and then they’ll look for a local boys’ team or somewhere they can go and stay sharp.”