Former Sheffield United ace suffers season-ending injury

Former Sheffield United midfielder John Fleck has been ruled out for the rest of the season by Blackburn Rovers, John Eustace has confirmed to Lancashire Telegraph.

The 32-year-old parted ways with the Blades late in the January transfer window after the Scotsman struggled to stay fit throughout the current campaign. United did not command a fee for the experienced central midfielder; Blackburn took on the remainder of his Blades contract.

Upon completing his move to the Lancashire outfit, Fleck found himself left on the bench as an unused substitute, before making his debut in a thrilling Lancashire derby away at Preston North End.

Unfortunately though, Fleck’s debut was cut all too short and was forced off with an injury just 17 minutes into the game.

Eustace told the Lancashire Telegraph: “John (Fleck) will be going in for surgery on Monday or Tuesday. Unfortunately he will be out for the rest of the season. He’s had surgery on his shin, he’s had to have a plate taken out and replaced. It’s very unfortunate for John.”

His sole appearance for Rovers may well deem to be his only appearance as the source suggests the club may choose against offering him a contract extension in the summer.

The former Scottish international has had persistent injury troubles over the last couple of seasons, but before that Fleck was somewhat a cult hero among the Sheffield United faithful.

Signed on a free transfer back in the summer of 2016 after leaving Coventry City, Fleck was one of United’s first signings for (at the time) new manager Chris Wilder. Little did we know Fleck would go on to be regarded as one of the best signings in modern history for the football club – ending his Blades career with 278 games played, 16 goals, 48 assists and three promotions.

John Fleck: A Sheffield United modern day legend

It is so unfortunate to see Fleck ruled out for the remainder of the season, and it leaves you wondering just how much football does the Scotsman have left in him. He’s suffered some serious scares over the last few seasons: a back injury and a number of leg fractures.

It is thought that Blackburn Rovers will not be extending his contract in the summer so it is plausible the veteran midfielder could be set to drop down the divisions, or perhaps a return to his homeland of Scotland could be on the cards. Or, he may possibly even call time on his career altogether.

I certainly won’t forget those moments John Fleck gave to us Sheffield United fans over the eight seasons he spent donning the red and white shirt. Some of those crucial goals in the 2016/17 League One campaign. The mazy run he went on against Coventry at home before finding the net in front of the Kop. Northampton away when he latched onto Billy Sharp’s cross in front of thousands of travelling Blades and bundled the ball home.

And how can you not forget the stunning freekick against Sheffield Wednesday in the 2017/18 season when United went on to embarrass their bitter rivals 4-2 at Hillsborough during the long-awaited return to the Championship.

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