Man Utd player confirms he’ll be out for a ‘couple of weeks’ after suffering ankle injury

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Tom Heaton will miss Manchester United’s trip to Newcastle United this weekend and is not expected to be fit until the middle of April.

Tom Heaton has confirmed he suffered an ankle injury prior to the international break which will keep the Manchester United goalkeeper out of action for a ‘couple of weeks’.

The 36-year-old has acted as the primary back-up to David de Gea in 2023, despite the arrival of Jack Butland on loan from Crystal Palace. The latter is yet to make an appearance for the Red Devils, while Heaton has played twice in the cup competitions since the turn of the year.

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However, he was absent from the matchday squad for the 3-1 FA Cup win over Fulham earlier this month - United’s last game before the March international break - with Butland taking his place on the bench. Speaking to United’s club media, Heaton explained that a training ground injury has left him wearing a protective boot in recent weeks.

“Yeah, unfortunately the day before the Fulham game, I rolled my ankle in training,” he revealed. “Thankfully, it’s not too bad but it’ll mean a couple of weeks out, I think. I should be back some point in April somewhere, hopefully halfway through.

“It’s an occupational hazard unfortunately, a bit of a random one but, yeah, I just went over on the ankle and nicked the ligament. I’m in this [protective boot] for another few days then hope to get it back moving again.”

Heaton has made three senior appearances since rejoining United last summer after he progressed through the club’s youth system but never made a senior appearance before departing permanently in 2010. The former Burnley and Aston Villa stopper’s contract expires at the end of the season, although United could exercise the option to extend it by another 12 months.

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Heaton’s injury means Butland is expected to be on the bench for Sunday’s meeting with Newcastle United, and probably the upcoming games against Brentford, Everton, Sevilla at Old Trafford in the next two weeks.

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