Harrogate Town new boy Max Wright's injury not serious, but will keep him out of Gateshead FC friendly

The injury sustained by new signing Max Wright during Harrogate Town's pre-season draw with Barnsley is not a serious one, Simon Weaver has revealed.

By Rhys Howell
Friday, 22nd July 2022, 10:50 am
Updated Friday, 22nd July 2022, 10:53 am
Max Wright taps the ball into an empty net during Harrogate Town's pre-season draw with Barnsley. Pictures: Matt Kirkham
Max Wright taps the ball into an empty net during Harrogate Town's pre-season draw with Barnsley. Pictures: Matt Kirkham

The versatile 24-year-old attacker was unveiled as the Sulphurites' 10th new signing of the summer transfer window on Wednesday afternoon having spent a number of weeks on trial at Wetherby Road.

And he wasted no time in making an impression, skillfully lifting the ball over visiting goalkeeper Jack Walton before finishing into an empty net to put League Two Town 1-0 up just 15 minutes into a game they went on to draw 2-2 with their Championship opponents.

But, less than 20 minutes later, Wright had to be replaced by Alex Pattison having hurt his ankle in a collision.

Max Wright was unveiled as Harrogate Town's 10th new signing of the summer on Wednesday.

The knock he picked up will mean that the former Grimsby man will play no part in Harrogate's final pre-season match, away at National League outfit Gateshead this Saturday (3pm).

Weaver is however confident that his newest recruit will be fit again in time for the start of the 2022/23 campaign on July 30.

"Max will miss this weekend's game," the Town boss told the Harrogate Advertiser.

"His ankle blew up a little bit after a collision in the first half of Wednesday's game, so we took him off as a precaution really.

"Obviously we want to look after him. It's nothing serious and he will be back training by the middle of next week."

Wright has been plagued by injuries in recent years, meaning that he managed just 13 appearances for Grimsby in the National League last term and played only eight times in 2020/21 due to a combination of thigh, hamstring and ankle issues.

And, with fitness concerns behind Weaver's decision to release the likes of winger Simon Power and left-back Lewis Page earlier this summer, his opting to sign a player who has struggled so much with injuries has come as a surprise to some of the club's fans.

But, although he accepts that he has taken a "calculated risk", Harrogate's manager believes that it is one that can really pay off.

"Max has been alright now for quite a few months, that's one of the differences between him and Simon Power, for example," he explained.

"He's been and got outside help, he's worked with specialists, which is something he'll continue to do here, and he's got himself fit.

"And he is a lad who really wants to play. He'll try to play through injury, which is something that obviously we need to watch and be careful with, but we will take a lot of care with him.

"We believe that if we really look after him then he'll be able to play plenty of games. It's a calculated risk but it is one that, if it pays off, we will really benefit from.

"Max can aim higher. He's got the ability and the attitude to play a lot higher, but it is because of his injury track-record that we have been able to bring him in at this time and we are delighted to have him."

On Wright finding the net just a couple of hours after being unveiled as a Town player, Weaver added: "It was quite the start, a brilliant goal and a really good move.

"It was quite direct, in fairness, but it was a great touch by Jack Muldoon, a great assist.

"The finish was a very skillful one and that is what Max can do, he's a real threat from wide areas and down the middle of the pitch."

Weaver went on to confirm that Wright is Town's only fresh injury concern, joining the already-sidelined Josh Falkingham, Will Smith and Rory McArdle on the treatment table.