Crewe Alexandra defender George Ray is edging closer to a return after getting a full week of intense running under his belt. The former Wales Under-21 defender has now re-joined first-team training and boss David Artell is open to him playing some part in a game in the next week.
Ray has not featured for the club since suffering a fracture in his back away at Yeovil over the Easter period but after working hard over the summer, the 23-year-old could yet play a part for the club’s Under-23s away at Cardiff on Friday. Artell says he will assess the defender before plotting his return, but he is not ruling out using him as a sub at Vale Park on Saturday.
David told crewealex.net: “George is fine and has returned to the group. He is training but we have modified it a little to make sure we treat him with kids’ gloves a bit this week.
“He got a full week of running behind him last week and he seems fine. There is a possibility that he could be involved for the U-23s on Friday at Cardiff. If he is then there is a possibility that he could be on the bench on Saturday at Port Vale. If we are defending a lead late there, then he could just be the man to come on and head those high balls out.
“It is more likely that he could be involved against Newcastle in the Checkatrade Trophy. There is no deadline though he will only play when he is ready. I will have a chat with him and see how he is feeling.
He added: “I know it is not nice being out injured, but we don’t want him to play 45 minutes and then be out for another three months. We want him to be right.”