QPR defender feared long-term injury lay-off after Newcastle thrashing

James Perch (left) feared a long injury lay-off after being stretchered off against Newcastle last m

James Perch (left) feared a long injury lay-off after being stretchered off against Newcastle last month - Credit: EMPICS Sport

James Perch has confessed he was surprised to only be on the sidelines for just over a month after appearing to seriously injury himself in the defeat to Newcastle last month.

The 31-year-old was stretchered off during Rangers’ 6-0 thrashing by his former club and it was initially thought that he would face a lengthy spell out with a long-term knee injury.

He also hurt his ankle, but thankfully scans showed no serious ligament damage and Perch responded well to treatment – to the defender’s relief.

He told the Times: “I was out for four or five weeks, which I’ll take all day long considering how bad I felt when I went down.

“After a couple of days the swelling to my knee and ankle went down a lot, so that was a huge relief.

“At the time we all thought I’d be out for a pretty long period to be honest, but thankfully that wasn’t the case in the end.”

Perch believes the Rs are in a far better position compared to this time last year, as they look for a second successive win over local rivals Brentford at Loftus Road tomorrow [Friday] night.

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He added: “We’ve moved forward with everything – the manager’s done a really good job.

“Obviously in terms of our league position [to this time last year] it’s very similar, but as players we feel a lot better and are a lot more confident definitely as a group and individually.”

He added: “It was the first time we had beaten a local team in a while [against Brentford in March] and I think that’ll play a big part in the game on Friday.

“They’ll still remember it and they’ll be wanting revenge against us, even more so than usual.

“It was quite comfortable at our place so it was nice to make it up to the fans after such a poor performance at Griffin Park [a 1-0 defeat] – we got battered all game.

“It’s a younger, fresh squad and a better dressing room here now, so we’re very confident of replicating that result [3-0].”

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