Hillier injury woe for Pompey

Gemma Hillier
Gemma Hillier

Pompey skipper Gemma Hillier is set to miss Sunday’s league cup clash with Yeovil

The striker had to be stretchered off with a serious-looking ankle injury during last weekend’s Hampshire FA Challenge Cup rout of QK Southampton.

She had already scored twice in the 15-0 win at that point but is now likely to join fellow-forward Jemma Tewkesbury on the sidelines.

Boss Vanessa Raynbird is not expecting to be able to call on her against Yeovil.

Raynbird said: ‘It was a bad tackle and Gemma took a really bad knock.

‘She was carried off and, I would say, certainly will not be fit for the weekend.

‘Gemma had an operation on her ankle a year ago and you do worry.

‘Jemma Tewkesbury is out injured as well at the moment and we are not sure when she will be coming back.’

The problems run deeper, with reserve forward Chloe Ranger working her way back from a broken foot.

Raynbird is also without the services of Sam Stone, who has left the club due to a back problem which was hampering her ability to reach the level required to play for the Blues.

That leaves Pompey with Charley Wilson as their only fit striker to call on.

‘We have told Charley not to train, not to run, not to do anything!’ joked Raynbird.

‘Chloe Ranger is the one I am hoping will come through.

‘She has played for Hawks and for Hampshire under-18s and the full Hampshire side.

‘When she plays, she scores lots of goals.

‘But she broke her foot in August and last weekend she just played her second match for the reserves.’

The Yeovil game at Moneyfields (2pm) appears to be a dead rubber in the league cup competition.

Cardiff have already won group one, leaving Yeovil and Pompey playing for second.

However, only the top team goes through, along with the best two runners-up from the rest of the groups.

And neither side is likely to finish as one of the best two runners-up, given teams in other groups already have more points on the board ahead of their final matches.

Raynbird said: ‘It would have been nice to progress in the competition.

‘We should have done better against Cardiff and that would have seen us in with a chance.

‘But our aim is to try and stay in the national division.

‘With all the injury problems we have, I am glad we are not playing a league match this weekend.’

The 15-0 rout of QK Southampton did allow Raynbird to give valuable match time to young winger Niamh Rawlins, who netted once.

Reserve keeper Naomi Parfit also had the chance to get a first-team outing under her belt – although she enjoyed a largely quiet afternoon.

Cally Beaumont was called up from the reserves and came off the bench.