Weston AFC goalkeeper Purnell out for at least three weeks

Weston goalkeeper Luke Purnell.

Weston AFC goalkeeper Luke Purnell has been with the Seagulls on and off since 2007 before leaving for Dawlish Town in 2010 and further moves to Barnstaple Town and Bridgwater Town during his time studying at university, before coming back permanently in 2013, where he has been in between the sticks ever since. - Credit: Josh Thomas

Weston AFC manager Scott Bartlett confirmed Luke Purnell is out for at least three weeks after his injury sustained in Tuesday nights 1-0 win at Dorchester Town.

Purnell was whacked in the head whilst diving in to collect a cross, after 75 minutes, where he was given treatment for 15 minutes on the field.

But Weston’s number one was able to get up and walk off the pitch assisted by both the physios of the Seagulls and Magpies and paramedics, leaving substitute Nick McCootie, who had come on for the injured Scott Laird, to go in goal for the rest of the game.

Bartlett confirmed Purnell was taken to hospital to be checked.

Purnell is set to miss Saturday's FA Cup match with Taunton Town, home Southern Premier South matches with Hartley Wintney and Swindon Supermarine and the visit to Walton Casuals.

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All this came after Lloyd Humphries had given the Seagulls the lead with a superb finish on the hour.

However, Weston held on to take all three points, their first win in four Southern Premier South matches and their first on the road since their opening day victory at Kings Langley.

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“It’s obviously a nasty injury, it always is when it’s a cut to the head,” he told the club’s video channel.

“I don’t think it’s a foul, I think if our forwards hadn’t gone in for that, like theirs did, I would be disappointed. It’s fair if the ball is in or around the box but obviously Luke has caught one on the back of his head.

“Luke will be out for the foreseeable future really, two or three weeks I would imagine at best case. Obviously our thoughts are with him and we have looked after him well.

"Nick McCootie, who we had just brought on, because Lairdy got injured then went in goal and I have to say his distribution was magnificent in fairness.

“We had 18 tough minutes but we showed a bravery to play. We didn’t want to try to defend our goal because we thought that it would just invite pressure and I have to say the players did that brilliantly.”

Weston AFC are back in action this Saturday for the second qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup against Taunton Town at the Optima Stadium for a 3pm kick-off.

Tickets are still on sale for the clash, but supporters are advised to book early and online, where they can be found here https://www.westonsmareafc.co.uk/tickets-for-taunton-fa-cup-tie-on-sale-now/.

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