Hodgson relief at Long escape
West Brom boss Roy Hodgson does not want to take Shane Long's lay-off lightly, but is pleased the striker is not seriously injured.
Last Updated: 26/10/11 1:50pm
West Brom boss Roy Hodgson does not want to take Shane Long's six-week injury lay-off lightly, but has admitted his relief the striker has not suffered any serious damage.
Long sustained what was feared to be a long-term knee problem in a challenge from Aston Villa's Alan Hutton during Saturday's derby, a tackle Hodgson claimed merited a red card.
But the forward could be back in action by the early part of December, although that will still rule him out of Republic of Ireland's Euro 2012 play-off with Estonia.
Hodgson said: "I was a bit relieved, although six weeks is still a lot. It means he will still possibly miss six games.
"You don't take the situation lightly, but we know it could have been a lot worse.
"The ideal scenario would have been no injury at all, but, if there has got to be one, at least it's not a serious break or ligament damage."
Hodgson said West Brom had "no plans at the moment" to recall striker Chris Wood from his loan spell at Birmingham after Long's setback.
The West Brom chief is hoping another West Brom striker, Simon Cox, can help the Republic overcome Long's absence.
He said: "It is a blow for them and a big blow to Shane, who is a very patriotic Irishman who was looking forward to helping his country get to the European finals.
"But it looks like they can fill the gap and maybe Simon Cox can help them."
West Brom midfielder Graham Dorrans is expected to return to training on Thursday after missing the Villa game with a knee injury.