Northampton boss Aidy Boothroyd has said Vale defender John McCombe did not deliberately intend to break Alex Nicholls’ leg.
I know he didn’t mean to cause the damage that he did…
McCombe was shown red for a last-gasp challenge that resulted in Nicholls leaving the pitch in an ambulance, but Boothroyd said after the match that the challenge by McCombe was “just one of those things.”
Boothroyd told the media: “John came to find me after the game and apologised. He told me he went for the ball and I just said it was fine, I understood. I know he didn’t mean to cause the damage that he did. These things do happen, but it does take the edge off what was a fantastic victory for us.”
Northampton striker Ade Akinfenwa added: “There’s no way we’re blaming John McCombe. I’ve played against him quite a few times in the past and I know there’s no way he would have meant that. But when something like that happens, it puts football into perspective. All the lads are gutted for Alex and our prayers and wishes are with him for a speedy recovery.”
Vale manager Micky Adams also absolved McCombe of blame telling the press: “John is distraught over the incident,” he said. We all know about him and there’s no way he’s a malicious player. I feel for the lad [Nicholls] and everyone connected with Port Vale wishes him all the best in his recovery.”
OVF would also like to wish Alex Nicholls a speedy and complete recovery from the injury.