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Young's bad break?

English Barclays Premiership

Luke Young is ruefully preparing for his longest break yet as a professional footballer.

With Chris Perry injured, Young was handed his big chance in Monday night's London derby against West Ham. For 47 minutes he seemed to relish the opportunity to shine on the big stage - then disaster struck.

The 21-year-old went in for a 50-50 challenge with his England Under-21 team-mate Joe Cole in the opening exchanges of the second half and barely moved after impact. After some on-field attention he hobbled off to the side of the pitch but it was clear that he could not continue.

Initial X-rays didn't show a break but after struggling on Tuesday morning his foot was put in a cast. He will now go for further tests.

Young revealed: "It was only about 30 seconds into the second half. The ball came loose and I went into a challenge. I wasn't sure who it was but I caught the bottom of his studs as I tried to kick the ball away.

"The problem is on the instep at the top of my foot. I had an X-ray straight away and that showed that nothing was broken but I woke up on Tuesday morning and couldn't put any weight on it at all, so I'll have to see what is actually wrong with it with another X-ray.

"I'm obviously disappointed but things like this happen in football. The thing is they don't normally happen to me and this is the first time I've had a half-serious injury. Touch wood it won't be as bad as we think. Hopefully I'll get fit as soon as possible and soon be back into action again."